*******************THE SCOREBOARD*******************







*******************TOP 25 MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL************************




#13 XAVIER 82 #19 UCONN 79

TEXAS A&M 79 #15 AUBURN 63












*******************TOP 25 WOMEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL*******************


#18 IOWA STATE 75 TCU 35








*********************NFL PLAYOFFS*******************



AFC:    6:30 PM (ET)              AFC CHAMPIONSHIP (CBS, PARAMOUNT+)




















***********************TOP NATIONAL HEADLINES************************



(AP) — Jalen Hurts, Justin Jefferson and Patrick Mahomes are finalists for The Associated Press 2022 NFL Most Valuable Player and Offensive Player of the Year awards.

The winners will be announced at NFL Honors on Feb. 9. A nationwide panel of 50 media members who regularly cover the league completed voting before the start of the playoffs.

Bills quarterback Josh Allen and Bengals QB Joe Burrow also are finalists for MVP.

Hurts had 3,701 yards passing, 760 yards rushing and 35 touchdowns combined, leading the Philadelphia Eagles to a 14-3 record in the regular season and the No. 1 seed in the NFC. The Eagles (15-3) are in the NFC championship game for the second time in six seasons.

Jefferson led the NFL with 128 catches and 1,809 yards receiving in his third season with the Minnesota Vikings. Jefferson was one of two unanimous choices for AP All-Pro along with Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce.

Mahomes, the 2018 NFL MVP, helped Kansas City go 14-3 to earn the No. 1 seed in the AFC. The Chiefs (15-3) are in the AFC title game for the fifth straight season. They’ll host the Bengals. Mahomes led the NFL with 5,250 yards passing and 41 TDs. He received 49 of 50 votes for AP first-team All-Pro.

San Francisco 49ers edge rusher Nick Bosa, Chiefs defensive tackle Chris Jones and Dallas Cowboys edge rusher Micah Parsons are the finalists for AP Defensive Player of the Year.

Bosa led the NFL with 18 1/2 sacks, Jones had 15 1/2 and Parsons got 14 1/2.

Brian Daboll, Doug Pederson and Kyle Shanahan are the finalists for AP Coach of the Year award. Daboll led the New York Giants to a 9-7-1 record in his first season as head coach. Pederson guided the Jacksonville Jaguars to a 9-8 record and an AFC South title in his first year with the team. Shanahan led the San Francisco 49ers to a 13-4 mark, including 5-0 down the stretch with third-string rookie quarterback Brock Purdy.

Purdy, Seattle Seahawks running back Kenneth Walker III and New York Jets wide receiver Garrett Wilson are the finalists for AP Offensive Rookie of the Year.

Purdy, the last player selected in the draft, began the season as third-string QB and stepped in after injuries to Trey Lance and Jimmy Garoppolo. He led San Francisco to a 5-0 record down the stretch, two playoff wins and an appearance in the NFC championship game at Philadelphia.

Walker led all rookies with 1,050 yards rushing and nine TDs. Wilson led all rookies with 83 catches and 1,103 yards receiving.

Jets cornerback Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner, Detroit Lions defensive end Aidan Hutchinson and Seahawks cornerback Tariq Woolen are the finalists for AP Defensive Rookie of the Year.

New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley, 49ers running back Christian McCaffrey and Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith are the finalists for AP Comeback Player of the Year.

Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson, 49ers defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans and Eagles offensive coordinator Shane Steichen are the finalists for AP Assistant Coach of the Year.

This was the first year for the AP’s new voting system. Voters chose a top 5 for MVP and top 3 for all other awards. For MVP, first-place were worth 10 points. Second through fifth-place votes were worth 5, 3, 2 and 1 points.

For all the other awards, first-place votes equaled 5 points, second were 3 and third were 1.


KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) The Chiefs’ Patrick Mahomes walked through Arrowhead Stadium as if nothing was amiss Wednesday, his sprained right ankle hardly hampering the All-Pro quarterback as he began preparing for the AFC title game against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Mahomes went through a normal morning walkthrough and then headed out for an afternoon practice with the rest of the Chiefs, four days after a Jacksonville pass rusher landed on his ankle and forced him to hobble off the field in pain.

“AFC championship week,” Mahomes said with a smile. “I’m ready to go.”

Mahomes was hurt late in the first quarter of the Chiefs’ 27-20 win over the Jaguars on Saturday. X-rays during the game came back negative, and Mahomes returned in the second half to lead the Chiefs to a spot in their fifth straight conference title game – and a Sunday night rematch with the Bengals, who beat them for a spot in last year’s Super Bowl.

Mahomes began getting treatment after the game, and an MRI on Sunday showed no structural damage.

“The last few days has been an all-day thing,” Mahomes said, “where you’re doing treatment and rehab and watching film. You’re trying to make sure you’re prepared for the Bengals, a great football team, mentally and physically.”

Mahomes jogged around without any apparent limp Wednesday in the brief portion of practice open to local reporters.

He said the injury is similar to one he played through early in the 2019 season, when Mahomes came back the following week to throw four touchdown passes in a win over the Raiders. The only difference is it’s the opposite ankle.

It’s also not as bad as a toe injury that Mahomes had earlier in his career.

“He had a couple injuries in college he fought through,” Chiefs coach Andy Reid said. “In the NFL, with all the games you play, very seldom do you get to this point without having something. That’s just how it goes.”

Reid said he doesn’t anticipate holding Mahomes back in practice this week, though it’s possible that Chad Henne gets some additional reps in practice. The 37-year-old backup led the Chiefs on a 12-play, 98-yard touchdown drive against the Jaguars while Mahomes was getting checked out late in the first half.

“Most likely he won’t just do a little. I don’t think I’m going to have to go there with that,” Reid said of Mahomes. “I may have to pull him back a little bit. But knowing him, I think he’s going to try to do everything.”

Mahomes also expects to practice like normal, though he admitted the plan could change if there is any soreness after a workout. The Chiefs also practice Thursday and Friday, though the final one of the week is more like a walkthrough.

“We’ll see throughout the week,” Mahomes said. “I’ve done limited stuff in a small box of what I can do, but I’ll push today and the next day and the next day again, to not reaggravate the injury but see what I can do.”

Asked what it meant to see his ailing leader take the field, Chiefs wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster replied: “It pretty much showed how much heart he has for his team and how much love for everyone.”

“Even this past game when he was going through his whole process,” Smith-Schuster said, “we could see he was fighting.”

Earlier on Wednesday, Mahomes was announced as one of the finalists for The Associated Press 2022 NFL MVP and Offensive Player of the Year awards. The 2018 MVP had perhaps the best season of his career, throwing for a career-best 5,250 yards with a league-leading 41 touchdown passes and just 12 interceptions.

Mahomes is winless in three tries against Bengals counterpart Joe Burrow, though, which includes last year’s AFC title game, when the Chiefs quarterback played poorly down the stretch and they blew a 21-3 lead in a 27-24 overtime defeat.

“It’s about being a competitor. You want to be out there, especially in these games,” Mahomes said. “You get to gameday, you just have to focus on the game. That’s what I’ll try to do. Try to prepare my body the best I can.”

NOTES: WR Mecole Hardman (abdominal injury) practiced Wednesday after missing all last week. He has not played since Nov. 6, and a series of setbacks since returning from injured reserve have kept him off the field. … TE Jody Fortson (elbow) and RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire also practiced. Both returned from IR last week but neither has been added to the active roster. “There’s a chance, either one,” Reid said of their potential to play Sunday. “Maybe more Fortson than Clyde.”


SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) San Francisco defensive lineman Charles Omenihu will be available to play in the NFC title game despite his arrest on a misdemeanor domestic violence allegation.

Coach Kyle Shanahan said Wednesday that the team will wait for the legal process to resolve after Omenihu was accused of pushing his girlfriend to the ground during an argument on Monday.

“If he’s healthy, he’ll play this week,” Shanahan said. “We’ve looked into it the last 48 hours, not necessarily myself but other people. We feel very good that the legal process will take care of itself. We don’t feel we should kick him off our team at this time.”

The NFL will review the matter under the league’s personal conduct policy, but Omenihu is available until that is completed.

San Jose police said they were called to Omenihu’s home on Monday afternoon to investigate a domestic violence incident.

According to the police report, a woman who said she was Omenihu’s girlfriend said he pushed her to the ground during an argument.

Officers did not observe any visible physical injuries, but the woman did complain of pain in her arm. She declined medical attention.

Omenihu was booked into the Santa Clara County Main Jail for misdemeanor domestic violence. He was freed after posting bail. The case will be submitted to the district attorney for possible charges.

Police said Omenihu was cooperative with officers and was served with an emergency protective restraining order.

The 25-year-old Omenihu is in his second season with the 49ers and part of their defensive line rotation.

He had a career-high 4 1/2 sacks in the regular season and added two sacks and a forced fumble in a wild-card win over Seattle on Jan. 14.

Omenihu played 15 defensive snaps in a win Sunday over Dallas. He injured his oblique during the game, but was able to return. He was expected to be limited at practice on Wednesday.

The 49ers were without two key offensive players for practice with running backs Christian McCaffrey (calf) and Elijah Mitchell (groin) both sidelined. Receiver Deebo Samuel and backup cornerback Ambry Thomas were both limited with an ankle injury.

Shanahan was hopeful all three would be available to play Sunday when the 49ers (15-4) visit Philadelphia (15-3) in the NFC title game.

“I expect them to but there’s no guarantees,” he said. “Especially being the NFC championship game, I think there’s a better chance they’ll be ready since there’s nothing guaranteed after this. We’ll keep our fingers crossed.”

Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo had an X-ray on his broken foot Tuesday and is not ready to return to practice yet. There’s still a possibility he could return as the backup if the Niners make the Super Bowl.



BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) LSU accidentally overpaid Tigers football coach Brian Kelly by $1 million during the first year of a 10-year, $100 million contract, but discovered the error and has moved to correct it, the Louisiana Legislative Auditor’s office said Wednesday.

Kelly was overpaid $1,001,368 in supplemental payments in 2022 because duplicate payments made both to Kelly’s LLC and to the coach directly.

The double payments began in May and continued until LSU officials detected the errors in November.

“LSU management and the head football coach have enacted an adjusted payment schedule so the amount of overpayment will be recouped by the conclusion of fiscal year 2023,” the Legislative Auditor’s report stated.

Kelly, who previously coached at Notre Dame for 12 seasons, was hired by LSU after the 2021 season, when the Tigers went 6-7 for its first losing season since 1999.

LSU exceeded expectations in Kelly’s first season in Baton Rouge, winning the SEC West Division and finishing 10-4 after a 63-7 victory over Purdue in the Citrus Bowl.



AUBURN, Ala. (AP) Tyrece Radford had 30 points and nine rebounds and Texas A&M beat No. 15 Auburn 79-63 on Wednesday night, ending the nation’s longest active home winning streak at 28 games.

The Aggies (14-6, 6-1 Southeastern Conference) used a strong offensive start to hand Auburn its first loss at Neville Arena since Feb. 23, 2021. Texas A&M shot 58.6% from the field in the first half to build a 45-30 lead.

“I thought we had poise,” Texas A&M coach Buzz Williams said. “We weren’t out of sorts. We weren’t rattled.”

Wade Taylor IV made all three of his 3-point attempts in the first half and finished with 15 points on 6-of-9 shooting for the Aggies. Texas A&M had only made a combined six 3-pointers in its previous two games, but it matched that total inside the first 14 minutes and finished 7 of 19 from long range.

Johni Broome and Wendell Green Jr. each scored 16 points for the Tigers (16-4, 6-2), who had won five straight games overall.

The Aggies closed the first half on a 13-2 run. Auburn tried to rally but got no closer than eight points after halftime.

“Texas A&M is a really good team,” Auburn coach Bruce Pearl said. “I think they’re one of the top four teams in our league. They outplayed us tonight. A veteran, talented, physical team. They’re going to have a good year.”


Texas A&M: The Aggies’ strong start to SEC play has been built on a tough interior presence and team defense. Their hot shooting on Wednesday is an encouraging sign for Williams’ team moving forward.

Auburn: The end to the Tigers’ win streak came with a familiar problem: defending high-scoring guards. Pearl’s squad struggled to slow down strong backcourts in its previous three losses, and Radford and Taylor were superb on Wednesday.


After turning the ball over 16 times last Saturday in a road loss to Kentucky, Texas A&M only committed nine turnovers against Auburn.

Williams said he used an old-school analogy to explain to his players how they should handle the hostile environment.

“I told them, `There used to be phones without caller ID,'” Williams said. “You had to answer the phone, and you didn’t know who was on the other end. You had to tell by the voice when you answered. … And we have to only hear one another’s voice. We can’t partake in the voices of anybody else – not the crowd, not the opponent, not the officials.”


Radford’s 30 points were the most the Virginia Tech transfer has scored in a Big 12 game in his two seasons with the Aggies. He made three 3-pointers and finished 11 of 12 from the free-throw line.

“He’s a great player,” Pearl said. “Great athlete. One of the best athletes in the country, really. Big, strong, physical and (had) a big game. Played great. I just didn’t have anybody who could stay in front of him.”


Texas A&M improved to 10-4 against Auburn since it joined the SEC.

The Tigers have lost four out of the last five in the series and have won just one home conference game against the Aggies.


Texas A&M: Hosts Vanderbilt on Saturday.

Auburn: Visits West Virginia as part of the Big 12/SEC Challenge on Saturday.


TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) The game didn’t look so easy for Alabama all of a sudden.

The 3-pointers weren’t falling and the second-ranked Crimson Tide fell behind by double digits instead of building a commanding lead.

The end result was the same: a ‘Bama victory, albeit a down-to-the-wire 66-63 game against slumping Mississippi State on Wednesday night.

The Crimson Tide (18-2, 8-0 Southeastern Conference) had to climb out of a 10-point hole in the second half and then hold on two days after reaching the program’s highest ranking since rising to No. 1 in the 2002-03 season. The result was a ninth straight win and the first real scare during that stretch.

“We didn’t start the game like we needed to but I give our guys a lot of credit,” Alabama coach Nate Oats said. “In the second half, they found a way to get a win in a tight game.

“We haven’t had very many tight games, so it’s not the worst. We had to figure out how to win a close game, especially when you’re down.”

The Bulldogs (12-8, 1-7) had one last chance to tie but Noah Gurley blocked Shakeel Moore’s 3-point attempt in the final seconds. They had also had two potential tying shots at the end of a 61-59 loss to Florida over the weekend and have now dropped five straight.

Jahvon Quinerly scored nine of his 14 points in the second half and had four assists for the Tide, which made just 5 of 28 3-pointers (18%). Brandon Miller and Noah Clowney both scored 13, and Clowney had eight rebounds.

Clowney made two free throws and Quinerly went 1 of 2 in the final 2:15.

Tolu Smith led Mississippi State with 15 points and seven rebounds. Dashawn Davis added 14.

Mississippi State coach Chris Jans called the loss “hard to swallow.”

“Obviously, we had control for the majority of the game,” Hans said. “They overtook us and I like how we responded.

“Just disappointed. We had an opportunity to get a big win for this team and this program against a team that is having a great season.”

It was Alabama’s first home game since the Jan. 15 arrest of reserve forward Darius Miles on a capital murder charge.

The Tide trailed by as many as 11 in the first half. Alabama didn’t take its first lead until going up 48-46 on Rylan Griffen’s 3-pointer with 9:19 left. It came after Miller took a charge on the other end.

The Bulldogs’ Davis was fouled on a 3-point attempt and made all three foul shots for a team that started 1 of 5 from the line.

“If you’re going to win an SEC championship, you’ve got to win some games that you don’t play your best and that you figure out a way to win a game,” Oats said. “Really our defense in the second half, I think, was what did it.”


Mississippi State: Flirted with beating its highest ranked opponent since upending No. 1 Kentucky in the 1996 SEC tournament, 84-73. Instead, the Bulldogs have lost nine straight against Top 25 teams since beating No. 24 Alabama last season.

Alabama: The Tide finally cooled off a bit after becoming just the third team in the last 50 years to win its first seven SEC games by double digits, but found a way to win. Making 19 of 22 free throws (86%) certainly helped.


Alabama junior college transfer Nick Pringle made both of his shots in the game and scored seven points. He’s now 19 of 20 (95%) on the season.

UP NEXT Mississippi State hosts No. 11 TCU on Saturday in the SEC-Big 12 Challenge.

Alabama visits Oklahoma on Saturday in another SEC-Big 12 matchup.


ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) Emanuel Sharp came off the bench to score 18 points and No. 3 Houston bounced back from a loss that knocked it from the top spot in the rankings, beating UCF 82-71 on Wednesday night.

Jarace Walker added 17 points, Jamal Shead had 14 points and 10 assists, and Marcus Sasser also scored 14 for the Cougars (19-2, 7-1 American Athletic Conference), who lost 56-55 at home to Temple on Sunday.

“We challenged our guys (after the loss),” Houston coach Kelvin Sampson said. “They’ve been challenged since that game was over. Everything in basketball is a competition. Tonight we competed and when you compete you have a much better chance of success.”

Ithiel Horton scored 18 points and Taylor Hendricks had 17 for UCF (13-7, 4-4). Hendricks’ three-point play capped a 6-0 run that pulled the Knights within 67-62 with 7:02 remaining.

Horton was called for a flagrant foul with 3:19 left in the game. Sharp made two free throws to extend Houston’s lead to 74-64.

“We have to reset,” UCF coach Johnny Dawkins said. “We’re going through a tough stretch right now. Tough games that we’re playing and the teams that we’re playing. We need to have a reset.”

Shead swished a contested 3-pointer to give the Cougars a 78-67 lead with 2:15 remaining and Walker sank a shot from the baseline to make it 80-67 with 1:25 left, matching Houston’s biggest lead of the game.

“We had the best player on the floor, Jamal Shead,” Sampson said. “Jamal Shead was the best player. His leadership, his toughness, gave our kids something to follow. And the fact that he’s at the point guard position makes it even more important.”

UCF took an early 8-2 lead before Houston responded with an 11-0 run. The Cougars led 38-34 at halftime.


Sampson said Sasser hurt his knee in the first half. He sat for a stretch after halftime and Sampson said the senior guard was “never right” in the second half. … UCF guard Darius Johnson (foot) started and had nine points on 3-of-11 shooting in 32 minutes.


Houston: The Cougars controlled the paint and the pace of the game for stretches in the second half, but foul trouble kept them from pulling away until the final three minutes. … The Cougars shot 50.9% from the floor.

UCF: The Knights could not keep up the pace in the second half and struggled handling Houston’s length on the inside. … UCF hit just one of its final seven shots.


Houston: Hosts Cincinnati on Saturday.

UCF: Hosts Temple on Saturday.


KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) Zakai Zeigler had 11 points and seven assists and No. 4 Tennessee held its 10th opponent to 50 or fewer points as the Volunteers beat Georgia 70-41 Wednesday night.

Tobe Awaka came off the bench to score 10 points. Santiago Vescovi had six rebounds, four assists and six steals to go with his eight points as Tennessee (17-3, 7-1 Southeastern Conference) got its first win at home since having its 25-game home winning streak stopped by Kentucky more than a week ago.

The Bulldogs (13-7, 3-4), who managed just 29% shooting from the field, were led by Terry Roberts with 11 points.

“We like to pressure the ball,” said Tennessee coach Rick Barnes. “The biggest thing we had to do was not foul.”

“(Tennessee’s) backcourt defense is as good as any,” said Georgia coach Mike White. “It all starts with Vescovi and Zeigler. They force you into mistakes.”

“(Vescovi and Zeigler) are fix-it guys,” said Barnes. “When something breaks down, they can fix it.”

The breakdown in the first half was a stretch of almost eight minutes that the Bulldogs went without scoring a basket. That allowed the Vols to get some breathing room.

“When we see teams get down, it gives us confidence,” said Zeigler. “(They get their) head down; get frustrated. They stop being themselves.”

Tennessee’s 22-6 run early in the second half turned an interesting game into a rout.

Georgia’s leading scorer Roberts managed just two points – as the halftime buzzer sounded – as Tennessee led 35-22 at intermission.

“I don’t know if we could have generated enough offense to beat them,” said White. “You can’t win on the road with 20 turnovers.”


This is the 301st week that Tennessee head coach Rick Barnes’ teams have been ranked in the AP Top 25 over his 36-year career, 85 of those have come with the Vols. . Tennessee jumped five places to No. 4 this week.


Georgia: White is able to celebrate in person his little brother Danny’s contract extension as Tennessee athletic director (starting at $2.2 million with a six-year rolling term) which was announced Wednesday. . After winning just one SEC game a year ago, the Bulldogs have won three already. Roberts has shown a spike in production of more than five points a game this season since the SEC campaign began. He’s averaging just shy of 20 points in league play.

Tennessee: The Vols have been tinkering with a new lineup recently. Point guard Ziegler had been coming off the bench, as was Josiah-Jordan James. Tyreke Key and Uros Plavsic have moved to the bench. . Injuries and illness have plagued the Vols. They have had 13 games in which at least one regular rotation player has been unavailable.


Georgia: After their 10-game home winning streak was snapped by Vanderbilt last week, the Bulldogs try to start another win streak against South Carolina on Saturday night.

Tennessee: The Vols will take a break from conference play to host Texas on Saturday night in the SEC-Big 12 Challenge.


STORRS, Conn. (AP) No. 13 Xavier went into Connecticut and earned the signature road win it was seeking.

Souley Boum scored 21 points, Colby Jones added 20 and the Musketeers checked that goal off their to-do list by holding off No. 19 UConn 82-79 on Wednesday night.

The win was the 13th in 14 games for the Musketeers (17-4, 9-1 Big East) and it gave them a season sweep over the struggling Huskies (16-6, 5-6).

Jack Nunge had 12 points and Jerome Hunter added 11 for Xavier, which led by 17 in the first half and 39-24 at halftime.

“We all knew in the locker room that they were going to make a run. That’s what great teams do,” Jones said. “Just how we responded to it, that’s what we wanted to see.”

Jordan Hawkins scored 26 of his 28 points in the second half for UConn, leading a comeback that fell just short. Tristen Newton added 23 points for the Huskies, who won their first 14 games this season before dropping six of their last eight.

The Musketeers never trailed but had to withstand UConn runs that cut the lead to a single point four times in the second half.

“There is no telling what would have happened if they had taken the lead,” Xavier coach Sean Miller said. “The roof may have blown off. So, I think that when they were really close and we answered with a basket or a free throw, I think that continued to help us just keep fighting.”

A three-point play from Hawkins made it 78-77 with 2:40 left, but a second-chance layup by Nunge extended the lead to 80-77 just more than a minute later.

Newton was fouled with two seconds left by Desmond Claude, but his attempt to intentionally miss his second free throw went into the basket.

Boum then hit two free throws at the other end, and Newton’s final attempt from just inside half court was well short.

Xavier jumped out to a 9-0 advantage as UConn missed its first nine shots.

A 3-pointer from Zach Freemantle gave the Musketeers their first double-digit lead at 20-9, and another from Jones pushed it to 35-18.

“You can’t put yourself in a 17-point hole versus quality like that and expect to be able to dig yourself out like we did,” UConn coach Dan Hurley said.


Xavier: The Musketeers lead the Big East, and the win over UConn was their ninth conference victory – eclipsing their total from last season.

UConn: The Huskies came in with a 17-game winning streak at Gampel Pavilion, dating to February 2021. They fell to 1-4 against the four teams in front of them in the Big East standings. The lone win came at Gampel versus Creighton.


UConn, once ranked No. 2 in the nation, doesn’t play again until next Tuesday and could fall out of the AP Top 25.

Xavier will look to move back toward the top 10 when it plays Saturday at Creighton.


Xavier shot 53.4% from the floor. UConn shot 50% in the second half, but was held to just 10 baskets on 31 shots (32.3%) in the first.


Freemantle, who had 16 points and 11 rebounds in the teams’ first meeting, scored nine this time but fouled out with six minutes left. Miller said he had been told by the official scorer that Freemantle had three personal fouls. But he also had picked up a fourth on a double technical with UConn’s Donovan Clingan.

“If Zach would have had four fouls, I wouldn’t have put him in mid-second half, I would have waited a lot longer, because he would have only had one left,” Miller said. “They might have got it right or wrong, but it’s hard when you’re told he has three. He commits a foul and then all of a sudden it goes from three to five.”


Xavier: The Musketeers continue their road trip with a visit to Creighton on Saturday.

UConn: Doesn’t play again until next Tuesday, when the Huskies visit DePaul.



AUSTIN, Texas (AP) DeYona Gaston scored 19 poi nts and Texas routed No. 14 Oklahoma 78-58 on Wednesday night as the Sooners went 1-for-17 shooting in the third quarter and missed 17 straight shots in the second half.

Taylor Jones scored 16 points and Shaylee Gonzales 12 with seven assists, six rebounds and four steals for the Longhorns (15-6, 6-2 Big 12 Conference), who joined Oklahoma and No. 18 Iowa State on top of the league standings.

Skylar Vann scored 13 points for Oklahoma, which shot 46% and had 24 turnovers.

Oklahoma guard Taylor Robertson tied the Division I women’s basketball record for 3-pointers as she made two. She now has 497, which matches the mark Ohio State star Kelsey Mitchell set from 2014 to 2018.

Robertson is a fifth-year senior who reached the record in two fewer games than Mitchell.

It was the worst offensive game of the season for the Sooners (16-3, 6-2), who had their five-game winning streak snapped. They entered averaging 87.3 points a game. Oklahoma’s previous low was 69 points in a win.

The Longhorns allow 57.6 points a game and improved to 14-0 when holding a team below 60.

Texas hit its first eight shots to jump to a 17-7 lead but the Sooners stormed back and got a 3-pointer at the buzzer from Kennedy Tucker to tie the game at 20 after one quarter. Oklahoma was 8 of 16 and Texas 9 of 12. Both teams had five turnovers.

Gaston scored the first seven points of the second quarter for Texas. Nevaeh Tot hit a 3-pointer and Robertson followed with a layup and the Sooners tied the game again at 33 but Gaston scored again and the Longhorns took a 40-36 lead at the half.

Oklahoma trailed 43-40 when Madi Williams made the Sooners’ only basket of the third quarter. When Liz Scott made the next OU bucket at 6:04 of the fourth quarter, Texas led 63-44.

The Sooners play at Iowa State and Oklahoma State is at Texas, both on Saturday.


FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) Ashley Joens scored 19 points and g rabbed 14 rebounds for her third straight double-double and No. 18 Iowa State coasted to a 75-35 win over TCU on Wednesday night.

Denae Fritz and Morgan Kane both added 13 points and Lexi Donarski had 10 for the Cyclones (14-4, 6-2 Big 12 Conference), who have won three straight. It was the ninth double-double of the season and 58th of her career for Joens, who also had three assists, two steals and a block.

The Horned Frogs (6-14, 0-8) were 1 of 13 in the third quarter when they were outscored 29-5. TCU shot 23% for the game, which was its eight-straight loss. TCU finished 2 of 16 from 3-point range with 19 turnovers.

Iowa State was 13 of 31 behind the arc, TCU was 13 of 56 overall.

Joens opened the game with a 3-pointer and had seven points as the Cyclones took a 10-0 lead. Her 3-pointer at the 4:22 mark made it 15-2. She added a 3-pointer in the second quarter for her 13th point and Iowa State led 33-17 at the break. TCU shot just 26% and had nine turnovers in the first half.

The Cyclones face No. 14 Oklahoma at home on Sunday. TCU is home against West Virginia.



PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) No offense to the Utah Jazz, but Damian Lillard said scoring 60 points against them was fairly simple. Not easy, just simple.

Lillard had a season-high 60 points, hitting nine 3-pointers, and the Portland Trail Blazers beat the Jazz 134-124 on Wednesday night.

Lillard tied for the second-most points in the NBA this season. Donovan Mitchell had 71 in an overtime game for Cleveland against Chicago on Jan. 3, and Luka Doncic scored 60 in Dallas’ OT victory over New York on Dec. 27.

“I think any time you score 60 points it’s special, but I think this one I just felt like it came pretty simple,” Lillard said. “I thought I played the game as it should’ve been played. I knew we needed to win so I came out with a mentality to attack and be aggressive, but it wasn’t like I just came out on fire. It wasn’t one of those games.”

Jerami Grant added 19 points to help Portland win its second straight game.

Lauri Markkanen led the Jazz with 24 points. He had a layup followed by a tip shot with 5:20 left that got Utah to 115-108.

Grant and Anfernee Simons had back-to-back dunks to put Portland up 121-110 and the Blazers led comfortably the rest of the way.

When Lillard came to the free-throw line late in the game, the home crowd stood and chanted “MVP! “MVP!” Lillard hit both free throws to reach 60, but missed a jumper from distance with 29.1 seconds left that would have topped his career best 61.

He wasn’t even aware he was near his career high until Blazers coach Chauncey Billups let him know after those free throws. Lillard thought he was coming out.

“Next time I came down they double-teamed me and I just rose up for three real quick and then they came down and scored,” Lillard said. “There was still time on the clock, but I wasn’t going to be that thirsty to come back down with that much time in the game just to get a career high.”

Lillard has four career games of 60 points or more. He’s reached 61 twice.

Jazz coach Will Harvey was asked what Utah could have done to stop Lillard after double-teaming him for much of the game.

“I guess in theory we could have sent three people at him,” Harvey quipped.

After struggling for much of January, the Blazers were coming off a morale-boosting 147-127 victory over San Antonio on Monday.

Lillard finished 21 of 29 from the field, 9 of 15 on 3s and 9 of 10 at the line. He also had eight assists, seven rebounds and three steals.

During the third quarter Lillard scored 20 straight Portland points.

“You just kind of sit back and just enjoy it,” Blazers teammate Nassir Little said about watching Lillard reach 60. “Marvel at his greatness.”


Jazz: The quick trip to Portland was in the middle of two Jazz homestands. They played three in Utah before the game, then return for five games at home. … Markkanen has made a 3-pointer in 37 straight games, the most for an NBA 7-footer.

Trail Blazers: It was the fourth game of a six-game homestand for the Blazers. … Portland was hurt in the first half when starter Josh Hart left with a hamstring injury and did not return. Jusuf Nurkic left the game in the third quarter with left calf soreness and did not return. … Lillard moved into sixth on the league’s all-time 3pointers made list, passing Vince Carter.


Lillard is among just five NBA players with four or more 60-point games. Wilt Chamberlain leads the list with 32, followed by Kobe Bryant with six. Lillard, James Harden and Michael Jordan all have four.

“I ain’t catching Wilt,” Lillard laughed.


Jazz: Host Dallas on Saturday night.

Trail Blazers: Host the Raptors on Saturday night.


PHILADELPHIA (AP) James Harden hit two 3-pointers and had a driving layup in the final four minutes against his former Brooklyn teammates and the Philadelphia 76ers stretched their winning streak to six games, outscoring the Nets 137-133 on Wednesday night.

Tyrese Maxey led the 76ers with 27 points, and Joel Embiid had 26. Harden added 23, and Philadelphia was 35 of 36 from the foul line.

“I don’t care about all that stuff,” Harden said when asked if it meant more to score against his former team.

Seth Curry had a season-high 32 points for Brooklyn. Kyrie Irving had 30 for the Nets, who have lost five of the last seven games without Kevin Durant. The Nets lost despite shooting 64.5% from the floor.

The game was the first regular-season matchup between Embiid and former teammate Ben Simmons since a February 2022 trade that sent Simmons to Brooklyn for Harden. Simmons missed the rest of the 2022 season with various injuries, then Embiid was injured and missed the Sixers’ win in Simmons’ Philadelphia return Nov. 22.

The night started with Simmons matched up on the defensive end against Embiid, who decided to change from his traditional shot facing the basket and muscle down low. Through the night, there were exchanges of words and stares between the two – including right before the start of the second half. It carried through the rest of the rosters, with six technical fouls called.

“It didn’t matter to me, I always try to play whomever is front of me with the same aggression and trying to score the ball,” said Embiid, who was 6 for 18 from the floor but 13 for 13 from the line. “I missed a lot of shots today, which hasn’t happened in a while. But I’m happy we got the win.”

The Philadelphia crowd reacted every move that Simmons made, often with boos and derisive chants. Simmons finished 12 points, five rebounds and five assists, but spent most of the critical fourth quarter moments on the bench.

“The last time was an eight,” Simmons said of the crowd reaction. “If we come here for the playoffs, it will probably be a 10.”

Brooklyn would start to creep into Philadelphia’s 17-point lead in the second half. Simmons scored 10 points in the third quarter to keep the Nets close. Curry and Irving, however, would serve as the main catalyst in an 18-4 run that allowed the Nets to tie the game at 120 with four minutes left.

“We had to play perfect basketball to come back in a game like that,” said Curry, who is Sixers coach Doc Rivers’ son-in-law. “We made a run at it, but we just couldn’t get us over the hump. The first three quarters of the game set us back.”

Harden took over after that, with a pair of step-back 3s and a bounce pass to Tobias Harris that allowed Philadelphia to get some breathing room.

Maxey – who has been Philadelphia’s sixth man since returning from a broken foot on Dec. 30 – had 16 of his 27 points in the first half.

“We’ll take the win, but that’s a good test for us,” Rivers said. “We have to be better at handling our emotions, but you don’t want to be emotional. I thought we were caught up in that tonight.”


Nets: Durant is out with a right MCL sprain. He was active on social media, making comments about trash talk between Embiid and Montrezl Harrell and complaining when Embiid made a D-generation X crotch chop after a three-point play.

76ers: The first quarter was the first time this season in the NBA that both teams had over 40 points. … On Dec. 5, the Sixers were 12-12 after losing in Houston. Since then, they have gone 19-4 and vaulted from the play-in tournament to the second seed in the East.


Nets: Host Detroit on Thursday night.

76ers: Host Denver on Saturday.


NEW ORLEANS (AP) The Minnesota Timberwolves looked unfazed by the long-awaited return of one New Orleans’ star players or the Pelicans’ mounting urgency to win.

Anthony Edwards scored 37 points, Rudy Gobert had 17 points and 12 rebounds, and the Timberwolves spoiled Brandon Ingram’s return from a two-month absence with a 111-102 victory over New Orleans on Wednesday night.

“We’re in a position where we want to really stop worrying about the other team,” Gobert said. “Regardless of what’s the weather or who’s hurt, whose playing, we know if we come with the right approach, the right mindset, it’s going to be a good game for us.”

D’Angelo Russell scored 19 points for the Timberwolves, who’ve won three of four. Jaden McDaniels closed out a 10-point night with a pull-up jumper and 3-pointer in the final minutes to thwart New Orleans’ comeback bid.

Minnesota coach Chris Finch praised Edwards’ ability to push the tempo and look for scoring opportunities in transition.

“That’s something we’ve been imploring him to do more of is just go, go go,” Finch said. “In transition, he’s pretty much unstoppable.”

Ingram, who had not played since Nov. 25 and had missed 29 games with a left toe injury, scored 13 points but missed 14 of 18 shots, including all six from deep.

“Great to have him out there,” Pelicans coach Willie Green said. “He’s knocking off some rust, which we expected.”

CJ McCollum scored 25 points and Jonas Valanciunas added 15 points and 12 rebounds for the Pelicans, who lost their sixth straight and dropped their ninth in 12 games since star forward Zion Williamson went out with a right hamstring injury.

New Orleans’ frustration boiled over in the middle of the fourth quarter when Jose Alvarado was called for a loose-ball foul and then assessed a technical when he bounced the ball hard off the floor.

Green began shouting and gesticulating angrily and was assessed a technical foul. He had to be restrained by assistants as he continued lambasting officials and was ejected for the first time in his two seasons as a head coach with his a second technical. The crowd stood and roared in support of Green as he walked toward the tunnel.

“I disagreed with the foul and the technical that Jose got and kind of voiced my displeasure with it and was pretty animated,” Green said calmly afterward.

New Orleans trailed 102-87 after Minnesota hit three of the five free throws they were awarded, but the Pelicans scored the next nine points – all by McCollum – to make it 102-96 with 3:27 left.

McDaniels’ pullup stopped the run. And after Ingram hit a baseline turnaround and two free throws to make it 104-100 with 1:41 left, McDaniels hit his decisive 3.

“We desperately needed somebody to make a shot right there,” Finch said.

The Timberwolves trailed by eight early in the third quarter when Russell’s back-to-back 3s ignited a 9-0 run capped by Edwards’ driving layup as he was fouled.

Soon after, Edwards’ 3 started a 14-0 Minnesota run. Gobert, who recently missed three games with a groin injury and had been listed as questionable, threw down three dunks during the surge – one a reverse and another an alley-oop.

“I started the game a little tight, but felt better and better throughout the game,” Gobert said. “So, it’s really a positive. At the end, I was feeling really good.”

Minnesota outscored New Orleans 39-21 in the third quarter, which “was obviously the key,” Finch said. “We really stepped up defensively, got out and ran and created a lot of really good looks.”

Ingram missed his first five shots before hitting a driving floater in the second quarter. At halftime, he was 2 of 11.

Still, New Orleans led by as many as 12 in the second quarter.

Minnesota cut it to 52-46 at halftime after Edwards hit a driving finger roll, giving him 20 points.


Timberwolves: Kyle Anderson scored 10 points. … Shot 48.8% (40 of 82) and made 11 of 29 from 3-point range. … Outscored New Orleans in the paint, 50-40 and 18-4 on fast breaks.

Pelicans: Devonte’ Graham made all four shots he attempted – all from 3-point range, for 12 points. … Shot 43.5% (37 of 85) and went 12 of 38 from deep. … Outrebounded Minnesota 42-36.


Timberwolves: Host Memphis on Friday night.

Pelicans: Host Washington on Saturday night.


HOUSTON (AP) Kyle Kuzma scored 20 of his 33 points in the fourth quarter to help the Washington Wizards rally for a 108-103 victory over the Houston Rockets Wednesday night.

The Wizards trailed by as many 19 points and were down by 10 to open the fourth quarter before Kuzma took over.

The Wizards scored the first eight points of the fourth to start a 15-2 run that gave them an 86-83 lead with about eight minutes left. The Wizards made five free throws in that span and Kuzma had 10 points with two 3-pointers.

Tari Eason made a layup for Houston after that before Kuzma made two more 3-pointers in less than a minute to power an 8-0 run that pushed Washington’s lead to 94-85.

“We’ve seen it from him,” Wizards coach Wes Unseld Jr. said. “Once he gets going he’s shooting into a big bucket. We needed it. We trust to put the ball in his hands in these moments and he’s come up big for us.”

Houston’s Alperen Sengun had 21 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists for his second career triple-double. Jalen Green had 19 points on 6-of-19 shooting after scoring a career-high 42 points Tuesday night against Minnesota in a win that snapped a 13-game skid.

“Late third quarter we got away from the things that are about winning, about building winning habits, about taking the right shot, about making the right path, and we’ve got to be better,” coach Stephen Silas said. “Young and inexperienced and all that, we’ve got to do better.”

Four points by the Rockets got them within four with less than 30 seconds to go before Bradley Beal made two free throws to make it 107-101. A dunk by Kenyon Martin Jr. cut the lead to four again with seven seconds to go but Kuzma made 1 of 2 free throws to seal the victory.

After the poor start to the fourth quarter, Houston got going, using an 7-2 run, with two dunks from Martin, to cut the lead to 96-92 with 4 1/2 minutes left.

But the Wizards scored the next five points to make it 100-92 with three minutes to go.

Eric Gordon made a basket for Houston after that but another 3 by Kuzma extended Washington’s lead to 105-97 with less than a minute to go.

Unseld was disappointed in how his team started the game but impressed with the way his guys bounced back.

“Not the prettiest game,” he said. “Didn’t have the energy in that first half. but to their credit they responded after halftime. In that fourth quarter we really ramped it up.”

The Rockets were up by 15 at halftime and had a 13-point lead with about eight minutes left in the third. The Wizards then used a 10-2 spurt to cut the lead to 66-61 with about 6 1/2 minutes left in the quarter. Corey Kispert had five points during that stretch and Kuzma capped it with a 3-point play.

Houston scored the next six points, with four from Jae’Sean Tate, to extend the lead to 72-61 with less than four minutes to go in the quarter.

Newcomer Kendrick Nunn made a 3-pointer for Washington after that, and Green added four points for the Rockets before another 3 by Nunn cut Houston’s lead to 76-67.

The Rockets added a basket before a 4-0 run by the Wizards, highlighted by a dunk from Kuzma cut the deficit to 78-71.

But Houston scored the last three points of the quarter to take an 81-71 lead into the fourth.


Wizards: Kristaps Porzingis missed a second straight game with an ankle injury. . Monte Morris sat out with a sore right hamstring. .

Rockets: Kevin Porter Jr. missed a seventh consecutive game with a bruised left foot. . Garrison Mathews received a flagrant foul early in the third quarter for a hit on Daniel Gafford, that sent him tumbling to the court. … Beal had 17 points.


Nunn made his Washington debut after being part of the trade from the Lakers for Rui Hachimura Tuesday. He had 12 points.

Unseld liked what he saw from his new player.

“I thought he was good,” Unseld said. “It’s tough because we haven’t had a full practice. But he just played to his strengths. He’s a good player. He’s got the ability to fill it up.”


Wizards: At New Orleans on Saturday night.

Rockets: Host Cleveland on Thursday night.


MILWAUKEE (AP) Giannis Antetokounmpo’s ability to keep getting to the free-throw line assured the Milwaukee Bucks would outlast the short-handed Denver Nuggets.

Antetokounmpo had 33 points and 14 rebounds Wednesday night as the Bucks won 107-99 over the Nuggets, who were playing without two-time reigning MVP Nikola Jokic and three other usual starters.

Antetokounmpo went 15 of 22 from the line and was two off his career high in free-throw attempts. All but one of those free-throw tries came in the second half.

“Just tried to get to the rim, tried to be aggressive as much as I can, get downhill, play within my strength,” Antetokounmpo said. “I tried to enjoy the game. I feel I sometimes get too locked in. I think I’ve got to enjoy the game more. Usually when I enjoy the game more, I get to the free-throw line more, I get downhill more, I’m able to find my teammates more and just make better plays.”

Jokic had returned after missing two games and recorded his fourth straight triple-double Tuesday in a 99-98 victory at New Orleans. He rested the hamstring Wednesday rather than playing on back-to-back nights.

His absence spoiled a potential matchup between the winners of the four last MVPs. Antetokoumpo won the award in 2019 and 2020.

The Western Conference-leading Nuggets also were missing Jamal Murray (left knee/injury management), Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (sprained right wrist) and Michael Porter Jr. (personal reasons). Porter missed a third straight game.

“We didn’t get the outcome that we wanted, but I saw a lot of great things from our group tonight that will help us moving forward,” Nuggets coach Michael Malone said.

Jrue Holiday had 20 points for the Bucks, who won despite committing 22 turnovers. Pat Connaughton scored a season-high 19 points, matched a career high with 12 rebounds and shot 7 of 8 overall and 5 of 6 on 3-point attempts.

Aaron Gordon had 26 points and 13 rebounds for the Nuggets. Bones Hyland added 15 points.

While the Nuggets were missing most of their top players, the Bucks also weren’t at full strength.

Milwaukee’s Bobby Portis missed a game for the first time this season after spraining his right medial collateral ligament and right wrist Monday in a 150-130 triumph at Detroit. The Bucks said Portis will be re-evaluated in two weeks. Bucks rookie MarJon Beauchamp was out due to patella tendinitis in his right knee.

After trailing by 14 early in the fourth quarter, the Nuggets cut the Bucks’ lead to 94-89 on Christian Braun’s 3-pointer with 5:01 left. The Bucks answered with five straight points and stayed ahead by at least seven the rest of the way, with Antetokounmpo going 9 of 15 from the line in the fourth quarter.

“It’s a challenge,” Malone said. “The guy is great in transition. He’s great in the paint. And he’s by far the best in the NBA in terms of drawing fouls and living at the free-throw line.”


Nuggets: With injuries leaving the Nuggets at far below full strength, Vlatko Cancar made his first start of the season and third of his career, Braun made his second career start and Zeke Nnaji made his fifth start of the season and seventh of his career.

Bucks: Coach Mike Budenholzer said Portis’ injury hasn’t impacted the status of reserve center Serge Ibaka, who isn’t with the team and hasn’t played since Jan. 1. The Bucks and Ibaka mutually agreed that the team would try to explore a trade involving the 6-11 veteran. … Khris Middleton came off the bench for the second straight time as he works his way back gradually from a sore right knee. Middleton, who has played just nine games this season, scored 10 points in 15 minutes.


Nuggets: At Philadelphia on Saturday in the first matchup of the season between the teams.

Bucks: At Indiana on Friday. In their only previous meeting this season, the Bucks beat the Pacers 132-119 in Milwaukee on Jan. 16.


OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Trae Young felt right at home in Oklahoma City against the Thunder.

The high-scoring Atlanta Hawks guard grew up in nearby Norman, Oklahoma, and played his one season of college ball at the University of Oklahoma. Thunder fans cheered when Young was introduced with Atlanta’s starters, and he gave them a show.

Young had 33 points and 11 assists, helping the Hawks beat the Thunder 137-132 on Wednesday night.

Young grew up watching the Thunder during their glory days with Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. It wasn’t his first time playing in Oklahoma City, but it was still surreal.

“It’s always fun,” he said. “I mean, I always get a lot of love and support out here and it’s always great coming back here and playing in front of these fans. I grew up obviously, going to a lot of these Thunder games, and so to be on that court is crazy.”

He dissected the Thunder defense by making 10 of 20 field goals and 10 of 11 free throws.

“I had a lot of respect for the way he played tonight,” Thunder coach Mark Daigneault said. “I thought he really controlled the game, especially early, and it really loosened us up defensively. And you know, that obviously was the game for us.”

Dejounte Murray scored 21 points and Bogdan Bogdanovic added 20 for the Hawks, who shot a season-high 59.5% from the field to snap a two-game losing streak.

“To guard a team, that’s that dynamic, we had to be a lot tighter than we were tonight,” Daigneault said. “And it was just kind of – it was death by paper cut. It was kind of everything. It was transition, it was fouling. It was a little bit of the glass. And then, you know, just a lack of discipline.”

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander scored 36 points and Jalen Williams added 24 for the Thunder.

Oklahoma City almost got away with their poor defensive effort. Williams stole the ball from Young and dunked to cut Atlanta’s lead to 133-132 with 15.3 seconds left. Atlanta’s John Collins was fouled with 14.5 seconds remaining. He made both free throws to make it 135-132.

Gilgeous-Alexander drove to the hoop to try to get quick points, but Murray blocked his shot. Gilgeous-Alexander rebounded and missed again, and Murray came up with the ball. Murray was fouled and made two free throws at the other end with 2.7 seconds remaining to put the game out of reach.

“I think we let one slip tonight for sure,” Gilgeous-Alexander said. “Offense was good enough, we just didn’t bring it defensively. They made us pay.”

The teams were tied at 77 at halftime. It was the most points the Hawks have scored in a half this season. Gilgeous-Alexander scored 26 points and Young had 22 before the break. Atlanta shot 58.3% from the field in the first half, while Oklahoma City shot 56.9%.

Atlanta led 109-104 at the end of the third quarter, then scored the first 10 points of the fourth. Oklahoma City responded with a 9-0 run to trim its deficit to six and force Atlanta to call a timeout. The game was close the rest of the way.


Hawks: F De’Andre Hunter sat out with asthma symptoms. … Murray was called for a technical foul in the second quarter. … Young was called for a technical in the third. … Collins had 19 points and 10 rebounds. … Capela had 18 points and 10 rebounds.

Thunder: G Tre Mann stole an inbounds pass, elevated, cocked the ball back and unleashed a towering right-handed jam in the final minute of the first quarter. … G Josh Giddey had 16 points, eight rebounds and six assists.


Hawks: Host the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday.

Thunder: Host the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday.


SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Jordan Poole scored the winning layup with a second remaining to cap a crazy, back-and-forth final minute, and the Golden State Warriors fought back to beat the Memphis Grizzlies 122-120 on Wednesday night.

Brandon Clarke had a tying dunk with 6.3 seconds left for Memphis on a pass from Ja Morant after Klay Thompson’s 3-pointer with 14.6 remaining put the Warriors ahead. Thompson then missed a rushed baseline jumper with five seconds to play, but Golden State got the ball out of bounds.

Stephen Curry outdueled Morant and scored 34 points before being ejected with 1:14 remaining in another thrilling game between the rivals who played last year in the Western Conference semifinals won by the Warriors in five games.

Morant wound up with 29 points and 12 assists after missing a game with an ankle injury. He converted a pair of free throws with 26.6 seconds left to put Memphis ahead before Thompson’s big 3.

Curry hit a tying jumper with 2:18 left and made three free throws at the 1:55 mark. He drew the ejection for throwing his mouthpiece into the seats. “He knows he can’t make that mistake,” coach Steve Kerr said.

Desmond Bane added 20 points for the Grizzlies in a balanced effort to help lessen the sting of losing durable big man Steven Adams for the foreseeable future with a knee injury.

Morant, who missed a loss Monday night at Sacramento with soreness in his left ankle, found Brandon Clarke for an alley-oop layup and three-point play with 4:10 remaining then Curry and Jordan Poole scored consecutive layups.

Thompson added 24 points and his 3 with 3:38 left in the third pulled the Warriors to 81-79. Then Curry converted a tying four-point play with 2:27 to go in the period after falling into the courtside seats.

The Warriors had lost four straight home games after beginning the season 17-2 at Chase Center.

Jonathan Kuminga moved into the Golden State starting lineup with Andrew Wiggins ill. Late in the first half, Kuminga drove through the lane for a highlight-reel left-handed slam then knocked down a 3-pointer a few possessions later. He wound up with 13 points.

Poole finished with 21 points and seven assists as the Warriors beat the Grizzlies again following a 123-109 win on Christmas Day. The Grizzlies have lost a season-high four straight to begin this season-long five-game West Coast road trip.

Green was whistled for his 14th technical foul of the season, moving him within two of an automatic one-game suspension.


Grizzlies coach Taylor Jenkins will mix and match lineups and substitution patterns without Adams, who is expected to miss three to five weeks with a sprained ligament in his right knee that he injured Sunday in Phoenix.

“We’re definitely going to miss Stevo, he does so much for us, all the little things, to impact winning,” Jenkins said. “We’re just going to need other guys to raise their level in those departments. Obviously we’re struggling right now on both ends of the floor, we just got to find our groove, it’s next-man up mentality.”


Grizzlies: Danny Green is set to make his season debut Feb. 1 at home against Portland as he returns from left knee surgery. “That’s the plan as of now,” Jenkins said. Green will get some scrimmaging and work with the G League Memphis Hustle this week. … Jaren Jackson Jr. fouled out with 2:33 to go. … Memphis will host the defending champions for the last two meetings: March 9 annd March 18.

Warriors: Kerr found out Wednesday morning Wiggins was sick and Kuminga earned his sixth start. … Curry reached 21,000 career points. He committed two fouls just 59 seconds into the game.


Grizzlies: At Minnesota on Friday night.

Warriors: Host Toronto on Friday night. 


SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) Pascal Siakam had 26 points and 11 rebounds as the Toronto Raptors beat the Pacific Division-leading Sacramento Kings 113-95 on Wednesday night.

“I like him shooting all those perimeter shots,” Raptors coach Nick Nurse said of Siakam. “He just got back in command of the game.”

Fred VanVleet scored 17 points and O.G. Anunoby added 11 for the Raptors, who had lost four of their last six games entering the contest. Precious Achiuwa added 19 points and Chris Boucher came off the bench to score 16.

“We looked good and felt good,” VanFleet said. “We were locked in. We have had our struggles this year.”

Kevin Huerter scored 21 points to lead the Kings (27-20), who entered the game with seven wins in their last eight games. Keegan Murray hit four 3-pointers and added 16 points, while De’Aaron Fox finished with 16 points and eight assists.

The Kings Domantas Sabonis finished with nine points and eight rebounds and saw his 22-game double-double streak come to an end.

“I have to play better,” said Sacramento’s Malik Monk, who shot 2 for 7 overall. “That’s it … shot’s just not going in. They’re going to start falling.”

The Raptors led by a point after the first quarter and seized control by outscoring Sacramento 34-27 and 26-17 in the second and third periods, respectively. The Kings closed within 12 points in the fourth quarter before Toronto pulled away.

Toronto shot 48 for 97 (49.5%) in the game, while Sacramento went 35 for 73 (48%).

“They kicked our behind on the glass,” Kings coach Mike Brown said. “It’s hard to beat a team when a team gets 25 more shots than you do.”


Raptors: Anunoby returned to the starting lineup after being sidelined with an ankle injury.

Kings: Chimezie Metu returned to the lineup after missing Monday’s game with a bone bruise in his left leg. … The Kings failed to score 100 points or more for the second time this season.


Kings: Open a seven-game trip at Minnesota on Saturday.

Raptors: At Golden State Warriors on Friday.


LOS ANGELES (AP) Anthony Davis scored 21 points in his return from a right foot injury, LeBron James added 20 and the Los Angeles Lakers bounced back from a rough loss to beat the San Antonio Spurs 113-104 on Wednesday night.

Davis, who missed 20 games due to a stress injury suffered during the first half of a Dec. 16 game at Denver, came in with 4:22 remaining in the first quarter. He was 7 of 15 from the field and also had 12 rebounds in 26 minutes for his 19th double-double in 26 games played this season.

Patrick Beverley scored a season-high 18 and Rui Hachimura added 12 in his Lakers debut.

Keldon Johnson had 25 points and Zach Collins scored 16 for San Antonio, which has won just five times in 22 road games.

James – who had 46 points in the Lakers’ 133-115 loss to the Clippers on Tuesday night – trails Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38,387 points) by just 157 points. Los Angeles goes on a five-game road trip with their next game at home being Feb. 7 against Oklahoma City.

The Lakers trailed 85-81 early in the fourth quarter before they took control with a 22-6 run over a span of nearly six minutes. Hachimura, who was acquired from Washington on Monday, had six points during the spurt and James scored five.

Los Angeles’ largest lead would be 14 late in the quarter as it swept the four-game season series.


Spurs: Dropped to 3-6 in the first game of a back-to-back. … San Antonio’s largest lead was 10 with 8:33 remaining in the second quarter. … Rookie Jeremy Sochan had 14 points.. … Collins received a Flagrant 1 with 0.2 seconds remaining in the third quarter when Davis tried a 3-pointer from halfcourt. He received a Flagrant 2 earlier in the season, which puts him at three points. Players start serving suspensions when they exceed five points.

Lakers: Improved to 4-4 on second game of a back-to-back. … Russell Westbrook, who scored 14 points, received his second Flagrant 1 foul of the season late in the first quarter.


Spurs: Remain in Los Angeles to face the Clippers on Thursday night.

Lakers: Begin a five-game road trip Saturday against Boston.



TORONTO (AP) Mitch Marner scored 19 seconds into overtime and the Toronto Maple Leafs defeated the New York Rangers 3-2 on Wednesday night in a matchup of Eastern Conference contenders.

Pontus Holmberg scored early and Timothy Liljegren had a goal and an assist for the Maple Leafs (30-11-8). Ilya Samsonov stopped 27 shots and improved to 14-0-1 at home, further cementing his place in Toronto’s crease ahead of Matt Murray.

“Dialed,” teammate William Nylander said. “On top of his game.”

Filip Chytil scored twice for New York (26-14-8), and Igor Shesterkin made 32 saves.

“We played real well in a tough building with a real good team against us,” Rangers coach Gerard Gallant said. “I want the two points, but we’ll take the one and run.”

Marner weaved his way past all three Rangers skaters in the 3-on-3 extra period after Toronto won the faceoff at center ice. He cut hard across the crease and tucked his 18th goal of the season past an outstretched Shesterkin.

“Tried to slow the play down, see if anything was going to open up,” Marner said. “Saw I had my own little lane and tried to take it.”

Chytil got New York even 1-all at 2:10 of the second period on a sneaky faceoff play.

The Rangers’ center squared off against David Kampf on an offensive zone draw, but instead of trying to win the puck back to a teammate, he fired it toward a surprised Samsonov with a shot through the pads for his 14th goal.

“Gotta give it to him,” Nylander said. “Haven’t seen that in a long time.”

Samsonov, meanwhile, wasn’t in the mood to discuss the play.

“I had a lot of positive moments,” he said. “(Chytil) won the lottery.”

Chytil then gave the Rangers – who beat Toronto 3-1 at Madison Square Garden on Dec. 15 – their first lead at 6:31 when Kaapo Kakko sent a slick pass to his linemate for him to snap home his second of the night.

New York had a terrific chance to go up 3-1 on a power play early in the third, but Chris Kreider flubbed a sure goal at the side of Samsonov’s net.

Toronto started to push as the period wore on and finally beat Shesterkin, who won the Vezina Trophy last season as the NHL’s top netminder, when Liljegren scored his fourth with 4:11 left on a broken play.

“The Rangers did a good job of shutting us down,” Liljegren said. “But we kept pushing.”

Nylander assisted on the goal for his 400th career point.

“We stepped on the gas a little bit,” Nylander said. “Got some offensive zone time and got some dirty pucks to the net.”

John Tavares hit the crossbar with a shot in the waning seconds of regulation for Toronto.

The Maple Leafs jumped out to a 1-0 lead 2:27 into the first – a chunk of the late-arriving crowd had yet to take their seats due to a winter storm that blanketed Toronto – when Holmberg moved in alone on Shesterkin and backhanded in his fifth of the campaign.

Samsonov made his best stop of the period five minutes before the intermission with a desperation stick save on K’Andre Miller in tight.

The Russian beat countryman Ilya Sorokin 5-2 on Monday when the New York Islanders were in town and duplicated the trick against another standout goaltender from his homeland 48 hours later.

“Great battle with him,” Samsonov said of Shesterkin. “A little bit bigger game for me than normal.”


Gallant said Wednesday morning he’s been happy with winger Alexis Lafreniere’s response to being made a healthy scratch Dec. 29. The first pick in the 2020 NHL draft had a goal and set up another in Monday’s 6-2 victory over Florida after registering just two assists in his previous nine games.

“He’s a 21-year-old kid,” Gallant said. “Sometimes they need a little kick in the butt to get going again. He’s been excellent.”

Lafreniere had an assist Wednesday.


Rangers winger Will Cuylle made his NHL debut in his hometown. Selected 60th overall in 2020, the 20-year-old has 13 goals and 20 points in 39 AHL games this season. Cuylle is the first Toronto native to debut in Toronto for a team other than the Maple Leafs since Kirk Tomlinson of the Minnesota North Stars on Feb. 24, 1988.


Rangers: Host the Vegas Golden Knights on Friday night in their final game before a long break for the All-Star Game.

Maple Leafs: Host the Ottawa Senators on Friday.


OTTAWA, Ontario (AP) Claude Giroux’s game-winning goal Wednesday night likely won’t stand out in his mind, but you can bet Ridly Greig will never forget it.

The 20-year-old Greig was making his NHL debut with the Ottawa Senators and Giroux picked up a Greig rebound to score what proved to be the winner against the New York Islanders in a 2-1 victory.

“It was unreal,” Greig said after the game. “You know, obviously a dream come true just to get out there and obviously to get the win it’s pretty good.”

Greig’s debut was impressive as he had eight shots on goal, tying the record for most shots on goal in an NHL debut. His defensive game was also impressive.

“His hockey sense is really high,” said Senators coach D.J. Smith. “He can skate. He’s really competitive. He’s a hockey player. He’s going to be a real good hockey player, it’s just over time is he ready now or not and I’ll tell you tonight he was effective.”

Greig played alongside Giroux, who he idolized as a child, and Alex DeBrincat and made an immediate impact on his coach and teammates.

“He’s fun to play with,” said Giroux. “His game is very mature. I remember my first game, mentally I wasn’t very there so it’s pretty impressive the way he was playing and winning puck battles and we had a good time.”

Shane Pinto also scored for the Senators, who snapped a two-game losing streak with the victory. Anton Forsberg, who stopped 21 shots, was called into action in the second period after Cam Talbot, who made 14 saves, left the game with a lower-body injury.

The Senators will have a better assessment on Talbot on Thursday, but Smith doesn’t expect Talbot to be available to the team before the all-star break.

The Islanders continue to struggle as their winless streak reached six games (0-4-2). Brock Nelson scored the lone goal for New York, while Semyon Varlamov stopped 36 shots.

“We battled,” said Casey Cizikas. “You can’t take that away. We battled hard. We worked. It’s just unfortunate. We’ve got to find a way to win these games. It’s definitely tough, but we’ve got to dig deep. We’ve just got to find a way.”

Trailing by one goal the Islanders pushed hard for the equalizer with Varlamov on the bench, but Forsberg made a couple of big saves to salvage the win.

Both teams exchanged goals in the second, but the Islanders were able to finish the period with a bit of momentum.

“I thought as the game went on we started to take the game over a little bit, but we just couldn’t find the back of the net,” said Islanders coach Lane Lambert.

Ottawa took a 2-0 lead with a power-play goal early in the period.


Greig is the son of retired NHL forward Mark Greig who played 125 games for the Hartford Whalers, Toronto Maple Leafs, Calgary Flames and Philadelphia Flyers from 1990-2003. Mark Greig was at the game and celebrating his 53rd birthday


Ottawa F Mark Kastelic missed the game with an undisclosed injury. Nikita Zaitsev will return after missing 12 games with a lower-body injury . The Islanders are riding a six-game losing streak (0-4-2) and president and GM Lou Lamoriello says he takes full responsibility. “There’s no excuses,” Lamoriello told reporters. “Because it’s on me, totally on me. That’s my responsibility to make us the best we possibly can, to make whatever changes we can. That’s not on the coaching staff, that’s not on the players, and I take that responsibility.”


Islanders: Host Red Wings on Friday night.

Senators: At Toronto on Friday night.


DALLAS (AP) The only way the Carolina Hurricanes and Dallas Stars meet again this season is if they make the Stanley Cup Final. While there’s still a long way to go, both teams are playing pretty good hockey just before the All-Star break.

Martin Necas scored 1:34 into overtime to give the Hurricanes a 3-2 win over the Western Conference leaders in a matchup of first-place teams Wednesday night.

“They’re playing kind of similar hockey like we do. It’s always tough going against them,” said Necas, who also had an OT winner when the teams played in December. “Fortunate, twice in overtime we beat them.”

Sebastian Aho scored shorthanded for his 200th career goal and Brent Burns also scored for the Hurricanes, who lead the Metropolitan Division in the Eastern Conference. The game-winner was Necas’ 19th goal this season.

Dallas is still atop the Central Division after consecutive 3-2 overtime losses at home. The Stars are 3-9 in games that have gone beyond regulation.

“The overtime thing, it’s a little bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy right now. We just don’t have a lot of confidence for whatever reason in overtime,” coach Pete DeBoer said. “We’ve got to find that swagger again.”

Jason Robertson scored his 33rd goal for Dallas, and 19-year-old rookie Wyatt Johnston got his 13th.

Carolina goalie Frederik Andersen didn’t return after the first intermission because of an upper-body injury, soon after a strange sequence that ended with Robertson scoring on a shot from what seemed to be an impossible angle.

The puck was bouncing on the ice behind Andersen and settled against the post after Tyler Seguin’s shot before the goalie was able to swipe it away to his right. Robertson then shot from behind Andersen, and the puck apparently ricocheted off him and into the net for a 2-1 Dallas lead. Robertson’s 33rd goal matched his assists total through 50 games.

Antti Raanta replaced Andersen and stopped all 15 shots he faced – none in overtime – after the starter had four saves. Raanta had to shake off getting struck in the head by Mason Marchment’s stick when the Stars forward was behind the net fighting for the puck midway through the third period.

“We didn’t give up a ton, which was great. It’s a tough spot to come in, obviously, when you’re cold and on the bench,” Carolina coach Rod Brind’Amour said of Raanta. “But, you know, he’s been around. He knows that that’s part of his job. And obviously he did it well.”

Stars goalie Jake Oettinger stopped 22 shots, including a glove save of Andrei Svechnikov’s wrister with just more than five minutes left in regulation.

In the first period, Oettinger went into a full split, with his right skate against the post, to deny Paul Stastny’s attempt to knock in a loose puck.

Aho put Carolina up 1-0 midway through the first period with his 16th career short-handed goal, matching captain Eric Staal’s franchise record. The Stars got even just more than two minutes later when Johnston scored unassisted after a faceoff.

Johnston also had a shot ricochet off the post with just under six minutes left.

Burns tied the game at 2 in the second period, getting the puck after a faceoff, then skating over the top of the circle and scoring top shelf over Oettinger’s left shoulder.

NOTES: Carolina improved to 8-8 in games past regulation. … Marchment was coming out of the penalty box at the same time as an errant pass in the second period. He had a breakaway attempt, but couldn’t get enough control of the puck to get off a quality shot. … Hurricanes defenseman Brett Pesce and Stars center Luke Glendening both got five-minute penalties for fighting in the second period.


Hurricanes: Will play San Jose on Friday night in the first of three consecutive home games.

Stars: Host the New Jersey Devils on Friday night in their last game before the All-Star break.


EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) Kent Johnson scored the overtime winner as the Columbus Blue Jackets came away with a surprise 3-2 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Wednesday night.

Johnson’s shot from the top of the circle went in off Oilers’ goalie Stuart Skinner’s glove and into the net 2:29 into the extra session.

“It’s one of the best feelings to get an OT winner. That was a huge win for us,” Johnson said. “These are the type of games you want to play in, they’re really fun, and have great energy. You have to manage the game to get the win.”

Boone Jenner and Kirill Marchenko also scored for the Blue Jackets who have managed to win two of their last three and get five points out of their last possible six.

“It’s big, especially lately, we’ve been playing good, but we haven’t had that many wins,” said Columbus goalie Joonas Korpisalo, who made 34 saves. “I think the way we played tonight it was awesome and it’s great to get points on the road.

Derek Ryan and Zach Hyman responded with goals for the Oilers, who saw a six-game winning streak snapped. The Oilers are the only team in the NHL that has been unable to stretch a winning streak to seven games or more in the last 20 years.

“It’s a bit frustrating,” said Oilers defenseman Tyson Barrie. “I think we had enough looks and chances to probably win the game. It certainly wasn’t our best game, but we gave ourselves a chance. It was disappointing to let them come back, and then OT is kind of anyone’s game.”

Edmonton had some early chances, but it was the Blue Jackets who struck first 12:25 into the opening period when Jenner was able to tip an Adam Boqvist snapshot from the point. Jenner has now scored in three consecutive games, giving him 14 goals on the season.

The Oilers pulled even midway through the middle frame as Ryan picked up a loose puck at mid-ice and beat Columbus goalie Joonas Korpisalo with a long rising shot for his seventh.

Shortly after Korpisalo robbed Leon Draisaitl with a huge glove save, Edmonton struck on the power play with 3:44 remaining in the second when Connor McDavid found Hyman at the side of the net for a redirection into the net for his 25th. The assist extended McDavid’s points streak to 11 games, and also gave him points in 28 of his last 29 games.

The Blue Jackets tied the game 11:26 into the third period on a great individual effort as Marchenko came out from behind the net and battled hard to slide it under Skinner for his 11th goal to send the game to extra time.


Oilers forward Evander Kane missed the game for personal reasons, dealing with his bankruptcy case in San Jose. Mattias Janmark returned from illness to take his place. . Columbus forward Marchenko came into the game as only the fourth player in NHL history to score 10 goals without recording an assist, something that hasn’t happened since 1926. The rookie has now scored his 11 goals in just 25 games since being called up from the AHL. . Edmonton forward Hyman is already experiencing a career season, now sitting with 57 points in 48 games this year, besting his previous career high from last year of 54 points in 76 games. Hyman had four goals and five assists in three games last week to be named the NHL’s First Star of the Week. . Columbus forward Gustav Nyquist played in his 700th NHL game.


Blue Jackets: Play the third game of a four-game road trip in Vancouver on Friday.

Oilers: Host the Chicago Blackhawks on Saturday.


SEATTLE (AP) Oliver Bjorkstrand wasn’t around for the struggles the Seattle Kraken endured during their disappointing inaugural season, but he understood the significance of their 6-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Wednesday night.

Led by Bjorkstrand’s first multigoal game of the season, the Kraken earned the first win in franchise history over their Pacific Northwest rivals and topped their win and points totals from last season – all before the All-Star break.

“Different team and definitely figured things out this season,” Bjorkstrand said. “We’re on to some good stuff. Consistency is a huge thing and I think throughout the season for the most part, we’ve been pretty consistent.”

Seattle picked up its 28th victory and 61st point in its 47th game. Last season, the expansion Kraken managed just 27 wins and 60 points.

This one came in convincing fashion against the Canucks – playing their second game under coach Rick Tocchet – after Seattle had lost the first six matchups since joining the NHL.

“That’s a great win for our club. We definitely owed them over the past two years,” defenseman Vince Dunn said.

Bjorkstrand started Seattle’s big night with his eighth of the season at 7:57 of the first period. His second goal came at 16:15 of the second and gave the Kraken a 5-0 lead. It was Bjorkstrand’s first multigoal game since Jan. 8, 2022, when he scored a pair for Columbus against New Jersey.

Jared McCann added his team-high 23rd of the season on the power play. Alex Wennberg also scored a power-play goal and Eeli Tolvanen’s one-timer was his sixth goal in 13 games since being picked up by Seattle off waivers.

Ryan Donato added his 12th early in the third period, his fourth goal in the past three games after going eight games without one.

Dunn had two assists and set a career high in points with 36. Jordan Eberle, Adam Larsson, Yanni Gourde and McCann all had two assists.

Martin Jones made 19 saves for Seattle.

“That was 60 minutes. We played 60 minutes,” coach Dave Hakstol said. “We made it hard right away from the start.”

Conor Garland scored his ninth of the season in the closing seconds of the second period, but it was an otherwise miserable night for the Canucks. Spencer Martin made 29 saves.

Tocchet’s second game in charge after taking over for fired coach Bruce Boudreau was far different than his debut a night earlier when Vancouver thumped Chicago.

There was even a brief chant in the third period of “Bruce, there it is,” in reference to Boudreau that seemed to come from a mix of Kraken and Canucks fans.

“That’s a good team right there,” Tocchet said. “I don’t know if the anxiety caught up to some of the guys, the emotions of the last week, but that was bad tonight. That was bad.”

The Canucks were sloppy and took two careless penalties that led to Seattle goals.

Seattle needed just eight seconds after Andrei Kuzmenko was penalized for hooking for Wennberg to make it 2-0 less than 10 minutes into the first period. The Kraken extended it to 3-0 on McCann’s goal after Tyler Myers was called for interference barreling through Matty Beniers away from the play.

“You hate to call your team soft, but it was soft tonight,” Tocchet said. “We didn’t participate in the wall battles. … We knew this was a good team. We didn’t play predictable. Old habits came (back). I wish I had like 10 practices because it shows tonight we’ve got a lot of work to do.”

Beniers was noticeably shaken up after the hit and played later in the period, but did not play in the third. Hakstol said Beniers was unavailable.

NOTES: Seattle F Jaden Schwartz (undisclosed) missed his sixth straight game, while D Justin Schultz (undisclosed) missed his third straight. Hakstol said Schultz is now week-to-week with his injury after previously being listed as day-to-day. … Vancouver placed F William Lockwood on injured reserve and F Phillip Di Giuseppe was recalled from Abbotsford.


Canucks: Host Columbus on Friday.

Kraken: Host Calgary on Friday.



(AP) — Another battle between Rory McIlroy and Patrick Reed began to take shape Wednesday.

As one of the most vocal critics of the LIV Golf breakaway league, McIlroy felt mentally drained at the end of last year and decided to put his clubs away for a few weeks.

“It’s been nice,” the top-ranked McIlroy said, “to try to take a little bit of time away, and try to sort of distance myself from the game of golf.”

Now he’s back and appears to be as fiery as ever.

McIlroy was on the driving range Tuesday at the Dubai Desert Classic when he was approached by Reed, one of the high-profile players to have joined the exodus to the Saudi-backed series that changed the face of golf in 2022.

McIlroy said he was busy practicing and didn’t feel the need to acknowledge Reed.

“Patrick came up to say hello and I didn’t really want him to,” McIlroy said Wednesday.

McIlroy was asked about reports the American threw a tee toward him. The four-time major winner said he didn’t see or feel anything.

“But apparently that’s what happened,” McIlroy said. “And if roles were reversed and I’d have thrown that tee at him, I’d be expecting him (to file) a lawsuit.”

McIlroy said he was served a subpoena on Christmas Eve from Larry Klayman, an attorney who has filed a lawsuit against the PGA Tour and European tour for suspending players who have signed with LIV Golf. Reed is not involved in that lawsuit.

Klayman also represents Reed in lawsuits filed against a number of media outlets.

“Of course, trying to have a nice time with my family and someone shows up on your doorstep and delivers that, you’re not going to take that well,” McIlroy said.

It’s clear McIlroy is in no mood for reconciliation in Dubai.

“So again, I’m living in reality, I don’t know where he’s living. If I were in his shoes, I wouldn’t expect a hello or a handshake.”

Reed, in a statement provided by Klayman, wanted to make clear he had nothing to do with the subpoena McIlroy received.

“So, McIlroy being upset about being served on Christmas Eve has absolutely nothing to do with Patrick Reed,” the statement said. “So we don’t know what world McIlroy is living in, but we live in the real world, and to try to lay blame on Patrick Reed or being upset with Patrick for being subpoenaed for a lawsuit that Patrick Reed is not a part of is simply ignorant.”

Reed said in Dubai it was “unfortunate” that McIlroy didn’t shake his hand.

“But it is one of those things – if you’re going to act like an immature little child then you might as well be treated like one,” Reed was quoted as saying by British newspaper The Daily Mail.

Reed said he “flicked” a tee toward McIlroy because it had a logo of the 4 Aces, his team in LIV Golf, on it.

“It was kind of a funny shot back,” Reed said.

Reed and McIlroy had a memorable singles match in the 2016 Ryder Cup at Hazeltine, which Reed won. They also were in the final round at the 2018 Masters, where Reed had a three-shot lead and went on to win. The Masters is the one major McIlroy has not won.

McIlroy was later asked if it would be beneficial to “fix your relationship” with another LIV rebel, Sergio Garcia, if it would help Europe’s cause ahead of this year’s Ryder Cup.

“No,” was the Northern Irishman’s blunt response.

The toll taken on McIlroy for effectively being an anti-LIV spokesman didn’t stop him returning to the top of the world ranking at the end of last year.

His last competitive tournament was the World Tour Championship, which was also in Dubai, in November.

McIlroy said the break gave him the opportunity to “recharge and reset and try to start 2023 with renewed optimism,” and he is back in the Middle East with some unfinished business.

In last year’s Dubai Desert Classic, McIlroy was in a share of the lead after 71 holes but bogeyed the par-5 No. 18 on Sunday after hitting his second shot into the water in front of the green. He finished a shot behind Viktor Hovland and Richard Bland, and Hovland wound up winning a playoff.

“Wasn’t quite the way I wanted to finish it off,” McIlroy said. “But you know, I went on from that week and played really well and had a great year.”

McIlroy is a two-time winner of the event – in 2009, which was his first title as a pro at the age of 19, and in 2015 – and enjoys coming to this part of the world.

“I’ve been coming here for a long time, 17 years,” he said. “I’ve got a level of comfort here. I like starting my year here. I have a lot of friends. I called this place home for four years.”



ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) Left-hander Jeffrey Springs became the first of the 33 players who exchanged proposed arbitration salaries with their teams to reach a deal, agreeing Wednesday to a $31 million, four-year contract with the Tampa Bay Rays that could be worth $65.75 million over five seasons.

The 30-year-old Springs was among seven Rays who swapped arbitration figures with the team on Jan. 13. He began last season in the bullpen, transitioned to the starting rotation in May and finished 9-5 with a 2.46 ERA in 33 appearances, including 25 starts. He is 14-6 with a 2.70 ERA in 76 outings – 51 of them in relief – since he was acquired from Boston in February 2021.

Rays president of baseball operations Erik Neander said the sides had been working toward an agreement for weeks and that Springs – drafted in the 30th round by the Texas Rangers in 2015 – has earned the opportunity to be a big part of Tampa Bay’s future.

“Jeffrey’s journey in baseball is a story of constant development and improvement. It’s a heck of a story,” Neander said, noting Springs was not drafted high and spent time with multiple organizations before landing with the Rays and becoming an important component of the team’s success.

“A big reason why we’re here at this point is we see him continuing to do that moving forward,” Neander said. “To have that opportunity, he’s earned that and we’re really excited that we’re gonna keep him around here longer than we otherwise would have.”

Springs, who is 19-10 with a 3.57 ERA over parts of five seasons with the Rangers, Red Sox and Rays, gets $4 million this year, $5.25 million in 2024 and $10.5 million in each of the following two seasons. Tampa Bay has a $15 million option for 2027 with a $750,000 buyout.

The 2025 and 2026 salaries can escalate by up to $3.75 million each based on innings in 2023-24 combined: $1.5 million for 300, $1 million for 325, $750,000 for 350 and $500,000 for 375. The `25 and ’26 salaries also can escalate based on finish in Cy Young Award voting in `23 and ’24: $2 million for winning, $1.5 million for finishing second through fifth and $250,000 for finishing sixth through 10th.

“Honestly, I don’t even know if it’s fully sank in quite yet,” Springs said. “Tons of emotion, to be honest, thinking about and hearing Erik talk about the journey. That’s something that kind of helped mold me into the person and player I am today, and I wouldn’t change that for anything.”

Tampa Bay’s option price could escalate based on Cy Young voting in 2025 and 2026: by $2.5 million for winning, $2 million for finishing second through fifth and $500,000 for sixth through 10th.

Springs would get $45.25 million if the option is exercised, $52.75 million with the option and meeting all innings targets, and the maximum if he meets the innings targets and wins two Cy Young Awards.

Springs’ ERA last season was the second-lowest in franchise history for a pitcher working a minimum of 100 innings. Former Rays ace Blake Snell compiled a 1.89 ERA on the way to winning the 2018 AL Cy Young Award.

In addition to finishing sixth in the AL in ERA, Springs allowed three runs or fewer in 22 of 25 starts and two runs or fewer 17 times. He joined Tampa Bay’s rotation on May 9, gradually increasing his workload over his next six appearances. Springs was 6-3 with a 2.40 ERA in 14 starts after the All-Star break.

Arbitration hearings start next week and the Rays still have the most players scheduled to appear before three-person panels.

Springs had asked for a raise from $947,500 to $3.55 million and had been offered $2.7 million. Tampa Bay remains scheduled for hearings with right-handers Jason Adam, Pete Fairbanks and Ryan Thompson, left-hander Colin Poche, third baseman Yandy Diaz and outfielder Harold Ramirez.

Tampa Bay also agreed to minor league contacts with catcher Gavin Collins and right-hander Jaime Schultz, who will report to major league spring training.

Infielder Austin Shenton and pitchers Anthony Molina and Joe LaSorsa also were invited to big league spring training.

**********************TOP INDIANA RELEASES***********************


Game Recap

Another major comeback wasn’t in the cards on the second leg of a back-to-back for the Indiana Pacers.

While the Pacers have overcome slow starts on multiple occasions this season – including a 21-point deficit on Tuesday against the Chicago Bulls –  the Blue & Gold couldn’t recover from down 17 in the first quarter to the Orlando Magic on Wednesday.

The Pacers (24-26) gave up 46 points in the opening frame – the most of any quarter this season –  and never led despite getting it all the way down to a one-possession game in the fourth quarter in a 126-120 loss to the Magic (19-29) at Amway Center.

Two of the top rookies from the 2022 NBA draft took the floor, as No. 1 overall pick Paolo Banchero had 23 points for the Magic and the No. 6 pick, Bennedict Mathurin, scored a game-high 26 points for the Pacers.

Between the two 20-year-olds, Banchero leads all rookies in scoring average (20.7 points per game) while Mathurin has more total points (882-852).

“I feel like I’m learning a lot and I’m growing as a player and as a person, too,” Mathurin said postgame. “I’ve been through adversity most of my life and most of my career as well. I feel like I’m pretty prepared for those moments, and stepping up in those moments … but also just being me.”

The Magic shot 56.1 percent from the field and 53.6 percent from 3-point range while the Blue & Gold shot 48.2 percent overall and 42.9 percent from deep.

After Mathurin, center Myles Turner had 22 points and 13 rebounds and Buddy Hield scored 21 points on six made 3-pointers.

Indiana native Garry Harris was second in scoring for the Magic with 22 points and five players scored in double figures on the winning team.

In the first quarter, the Magic took an early 46-29 lead.

Orlando made 16 of 25 shots in the opening frame and hit all eight free throw attempts while the Pacers turned the ball over five times and made 50 percent of their shots.

The Magic jumped to an 11-0 lead, on six points from Banchero, two minutes into the game.

Out of a timeout, Pacers point guard T.J. McConnell converted an and-one opportunity to stop the bleeding, but the Magic went on a 7-2 mini run to go up 18-5 with 8:54 left in the first quarter.

Orlando came out on fire from the field, making eight of their first 11 shot attempts.

The Magic continued to pour it on the remainder of the quarter, and a 3-pointer by Jalen Suggs with one tick left on the clock put his team up by 17.

Banchero led all scorers with 13 points after 12 minutes of play, going 6-for-6 from the free throw line, in the first quarter for the Magic.

The Pacers scored six unanswered points to open the second quarter and then used a 14-2 run, on six points from Mathurin and 3-pointers from Oshae Brissett and Hield, to make it 56-54 with 5:10 left in the half.

Orlando responded with a 9-2 run to go up 71-62, but back-to-back 3-pointers from Hield made it 71-68 Magic with 23 ticks on the clock before a basket by Franz Wagner off a hail mary pass by Suggs with a second left on the clock put the Magic up by five points at the break.

Both teams shot at a high clip in the first half, as the Magic made 60.9 percent of their shots while the Pacers hit 57.1 percent of their attempts. Hield had 17 points – making all five of his 3-point attempts – and Mathurin had 14 points for the Pacers while Banchero scored 17 for the Magic in the first half.

Out of the break, the teams traded baskets until the Magic were able to establish some distance at 93-83 with 5:11 left in the third quarter.

Turner helped keep the Pacers in the game, scoring 10 points in the third period, but the visitors trailed 102-91 going into the final frame.

While Hield hit another 3-pointer to open the fourth quarter, the Magic then went on a 9-0 scoring spree behind four different scorers to lead 111-94 with eight minutes left.

Indiana chipped away at the lead down the stretch, but never went ahead.

A basket by Markelle Fultz with 90 seconds remaining and a pair of free throws by Banchero with a minute left ended up giving the Magic enough of a cushion down the stretch despite the Pacers cutting it to four points with 19 seconds on the clock.

“There’s no questioning the fight in this team,” Pacers coach Rick Carlisle said. “The second, third and fourth quarters were really good, really solid. You give up 46 In the first quarter,  it’s almost like you gotta play a perfect game from there.”

Despite the loss, the Pacers still lead the season series 2-1 over the Magic. The teams will play again on Feb. 25 in Orlando.

Inside the Numbers

Mathurin has now scored 20 or more points 20 times this season. He has now done it three games in a row, which is a first for him.

Mathurin now has 19 20-point games off the bench, which is the second most by a rookie since starters were listed in box scores during the 1970-1971 season, according to ESPN Stats & Info. Ben Gordon currently owns the record with 24 (2004-2005).

The Pacers had 14 turnovers after just giving the ball away a season-low seven times on Tuesday. Orlando finished with 17 turnovers.

The Magic outscored the Pacers 27-14 in fast-break points.

Mathurin has attempted 10 or more free throws 14 times in a  game this season.

The Pacers are now 6-4 on the second leg of back-to-backs.

Turner has scored in double digits in the third quarter in back-to-back games.

Turner has 13 double-doubles this season.

Chris Duarte had a career-high six steals for the Pacers, which is also the most by a player on the team in a game this season.

Hield has made six or more 3-pointers seven times this season and five or more 19 times.

Harris, a Fishers native, had a season-high in points scored (22).

All 11 players that took the floor for Orlando scored at least one basket.

You Can Quote Me On That

“Tonight we saw the two best rookies in the league. Their stats were incredibly comparable and they’re both great. That was fun to watch.” Carlisle on Mathurin and Banchero

“The second night of a back-to-back is not an excuse because we’ve been good all year in those situations. So we’ve just got to be better.” Carlisle on the loss

“It’s like he’s gaining momentum and gaining strength, and so that’s a testament to his strong will as a player. So far hasn’t missed a game. He was really aggressive from start to finish tonight – he did a good job attacking.” Carlisle on Mathurin’s recent play

“I’m just trying to stay aggressive. Every time I come into the game, I’m trying to be the same person – trying to attack the rim, getting to the foul line and making winning plays. I feel like it has been pretty helpful for the team.”

“I always believe in the saying that if you put the work in, the basketball gods are going to reward you.” – Mathurin on his game

Stat of the Night

In the first quarter, the Pacers gave up a season-high 46 points in a quarter. The previous high for a quarter against the Pacers was 44 by the Sacramento Kings on Nov. 30.


Pacers star point guard Tyrese Haliburton missed an eighth straight game due to knee and elbow sprains and rookie Andrew Nembhard missed a second consecutive game due to a non-COVID-19 illness.

Six players were active for the Magic against the Pacers that didn’t play in the previous two contests due to injuries.

This was the first matchup between Mathurin and Banchero, who are widely considered the frontrunners for the Rookie of the Year Award.

Up Next

The Pacers return to Gainbridge Fieldhouse to take on Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks on Friday, Jan. 27 at 7:00 PM ET.



MINNEAPOLIS — Forget basketball as art. Sometimes you just find a way.

Oh. Get Trayce Jackson-Davis the ball.

Indiana did just enough of that Wednesday night for a 61-57 victory over injury depleted Minnesota. The Hoosiers (14-6 overall, 5-4 in the Big Ten) have won four straight games.

Even without head coach Mike Woodson, who was sidelined by Covid, they held Minnesota (7-12, 1-8) scoreless over the final three-plus minutes during their 7-0, game-closing run. The Gophers missed their last 11 shots.

“Defense is what we’re built on,” associate head coach Yasir Rosemond said. “We work on defense every day. Coach Woodson put in a system and we live and die on it. We dug in defensively and got some stops.”

Jackson-Davis, as he has throughout this hot streak, was the catalyst. He totaled 25 points (16 in the second half, the last two off a huge crunch-time rebound off Race Thompson’s missed free throw), 21 rebounds and six blocks.

He broke a tie with Jeff Newton for program career blocked shots. He has 233.

“His leadership has been amazing,” Rosemond said. “He’s finally healthy. For a guy at the top of the scouting report to do what he’s doing is amazing.

“I’ve coached a couple of NBA guys, and he’s the best I’ve coached.”

Added Jackson-Davis: I’m just playing basketball and trying to help teammates. I was attacking on offense.”

With Woodson out, Rosemond, along with fellow assistant coaches Kenya Hunter and Brian Walsh, took over.

“Coach Woodson always says, ‘Next man up.’ He tells us, if something happens, whose ever scout it is, you’re the head coach,” Rosemond said.

“We’re always prepared. He treats us like head coaches. He gives us a lot of say. He has the final say. It’s a tribute to him and his confidence in us.”

Added Jackson-Davis: “We knew Coach Ya and the coaches had it covered.”

Minnesota was missing three injured key players, forcing it to play small. That was a big problem given Jackson-Davis’ big presence. Add its last-place Big Ten status and five straight losses to the Hoosiers, and the challenge was formidable.

The Gophers’ strategy — a 2-3 zone to keep the ball out of the paint and away from Jackson-Davis, and play with ferocious intensity.

In a game that featured seven ties and seven lead changes, it almost was enough.

“At the end of the day,” Jackson-Davis said, “we found a way to win. It was big for us.”

Senior forward Race Thompson, a Minnesota native, started for the first time since a knee injury sidelined him for four games. He finished with four points, four rebounds, three assists and three blocks. His main assignment was guarding Jamison Battle, the Gophers’ leading scorer.

“Race gave us minutes, did things in the middle and had a tough defensive assignment guarding Battle,” Rosemond said.

Swingman Miller Kopp added 11 points, tracked down a huge crunch-time loose ball, defended, hustled and played all 40 minutes.

“He was engaged,” Jackson-Davis said. “He’s a great leader. He came here to make shots, but he hustles. He dives for loose balls. He guards. Those are all huge things we need from him. He’s doing so much more than being a catch-and-shoot shooter.”

Kopp hit a pair of early three-pointers to give Indiana a three-point lead it couldn’t hold because of three straight turnovers.

A Minnesota team not known for drawing fouls drew 10 of them in the first half. The result was 6-for-11 free throw shooting compared to IU’s 4-for-8.

The Gophers built first-half leads as large as six points. Forward Malik Reneau came off the bench for 10 points to spark a 12-2 run, then Kopp finished it off with a late three-pointer to give IU a 33-30 halftime lead.

Jackson-Davis opened the second half with eight points as the Hoosiers pushed ahead 45-38. The Gophers surged back for a 47-47 tie with 10 minutes left.

A spectacular Jackson-Davis dunk off a Jalen Hood-Schifino pass put IU ahead by two. A Battle three-pointer gave Minnesota a 50-49 lead. Trey Galloway’s three-pointer made it a 52-50 Hoosier advantage.

The Gophers rallied. The Hoosiers rallied.

With 43 seconds left, Thompson hit a free throw for a 57-57 tie. Jackson-Davis rebounded Thompson’s miss on the second free-throw attempt and scored to give IU a lead it finally held.

“This was a group effort,” Jackson-Davis said. “We never folded, especially when we got down. We know we’ve got to keep grinding. Play together. That’s what we’re doing.”

At the end, Rosemond said, “We kept saying in the huddle that we’ve got to guard the drive. We’ve got to get stops. All the guys were engaged. It was a total team effort.”



BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – A battle for the top spot in the league is up for grabs on Thursday night when No. 6 Indiana hosts No. 2/5 Ohio State. Game time is slated for 8:30 p.m. ET inside Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall.


Ohio State is coming off its first loss to No. 10 Iowa at home on Monday night. Graduate student guard Taylor Mikesell leads the way with 18.2 points per game while shooting 38.9 percent from the arc and 63 made triples. Three others average double figures in senior forward Rebeka Mikulashikova (14.3 ppg., 5.2 rpg.) and freshman guard Cotie McMahon with 13.0 points per game. OSU is averaging a league second-best 85.6 points per game.


Ohio State leads 60-24


3/5/22 – W, 70-62 (Indianapolis)


The Hoosiers are fresh off a win at No. 13/16 Michigan, 92-83, on Monday night. Senior forward Mackenzie Holmes led the way with her ninth double-double of the season with 25 points and 10 rebounds while senior guard Sara Scalia added 19 points off the bench by going 7-for-10 from the floor.

Holmes is one of four players averaging double figures for IU this season, followed by freshman guard Yarden Garzon (12.3 ppg.), junior guard Sydney Parrish (12.3 ppg.) and graduate student guard Grace Berger (11.6 ppg.). One of the most accurate teams as well, Indiana shoots the nation’s second best clip from the field, averaging 50.3 percent per game and averaging 81.8 points.

Thursday’s contest against No. 2/5 Ohio State will be the Hoosiers its sixth ranked meeting of the season against foes in the Top 25. It’s also the third of four ranked matchups in five games as they picked up their fifth ranked win of the season at No. 13/16 Michigan on Monday night. IU has also posted back-to-back season with five Top 25 wins for the first time in school history.

Indiana secured its best start with the win at No. 13 Michigan on Monday night. The Hoosiers improved to 18-1, the best start since the inaugural season in 1971-72 when the team finished 17-2.

Indiana won both meetings in the series in the 2021-22 season where it met once in the regular season in Columbus on Dec. 12, 2021 in a 86-66 victory and picked up the upset of the top seeded Buckeyes in a 70-62 win in the Big Ten Tournament semifinals on March 5, 2022. It was the first three-straight wins in the series since 2001-03.


The Hoosiers hosts Rutgers in Sunday afternoon action for National Girls and Women in Sports Day at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall. Tipoff is slated for 2 p.m. ET.




Thursday, January 26, 2023

[1] Purdue (19-1, 7-1) vs. Michigan (11-8, 5-3)

Ann Arbor, Michigan | Crisler Center (12,707)

TELEVISION: FS1 | RADIO: Purdue Sports Network

ANNOUNCERS: Jason Benetti, Bill Raftery


• Purdue returns to the road for the fifth time in its last seven games when it heads to Ann Arbor for a Thursday night tilt with Michigan. Leaving a day early because of an impending snowstorm, Purdue will have been on the road for 12 of the last 23 days, starting with the Jan. 4, departure to Ohio State. During that span, the Boilermakers have won all four road games by a total of 38 points.

• After Thursday’s game, Purdue will finish the season with six home games in its final 10 Big Ten games.

• A win over Michigan would give Purdue wins at Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State for the first time since the 1997-98 season. Purdue hasn’t won on the road at Michigan and Michigan State since the 2010-11 season.

• Purdue’s 19-1 record is the program’s best 19-game start in school history. A win over Michigan will give Purdue a 20-1 record through 21 games, just the fifth time since 2000 that a Big Ten team would start 19-1 (2019 Michigan; 2013 Michigan; 2011 Ohio State; 2005 Illinois).

• Purdue’s 5-0 start on the road in Big Ten play is the league’s best since Purdue started 7-0 on the road to start the 2017-18 Big Ten season.

• A win over Michigan will give Purdue a 9-1 record at the halfway point of the league season. Purdue has had just one loss at the halfway point of league play six times in the last 53 seasons (2018 – 12-0; 2008 – 8-1; 1990 – 8-1; 1988 – 8-1; 1987 – 8-1; 1984 – 8-1).

• Purdue can claim America’s best resume, being one of two teams in America (Kansas) with seven quad-1 wins, five of them against teams ranked in the NCAA Net’s top 30 (Gonzaga, Ohio State, West Virginia, Marquette, Duke). Six of the wins (Marquette) have come away from home.

• After being one of the final two teams in the country with zero losses (New Mexico was last), Purdue is now one of three teams nationally with just one loss (Purdue, Florida Atlantic, College of Charleston). Purdue is one of three high-major programs with two or fewer losses (Purdue, Alabama, Kansas State).

• Purdue has MADE 312 free throws this season, while opponents have SHOT just 187. Purdue has made 175 more free throws (312 to 137) than its foes this season, the highest discrepancy in the nation (Purdue +175, North Carolina +157, Providence +131, Iowa +128, New Mexico +128).

• Over the last six games, Purdue is shooting 84.2 percent (64-76) from the FT line. Opponents have made just 28 free throws in that span.

• Purdue ranks sixth nationally in fewest fouls per game (13.3) and is first nationally in opponent free throw attempts per game (9.4). The average is the lowest for an opponent since at least the 2010-11 season (lowest mark is 11.2 by Virginia in 2019-20).

• Purdue has held 21 straight opponents to 70 points or less, the second-longest streak in the country (Saint Mary’s – 22).

• Since Jan. 5, which coincides with Purdue’s six-game winning streak, Purdue owns the nation’s eighth-best defensive efficiency (87.9), according to BartTorvik.com. Opponents are averaging just 57.3 points per game over the last six, including 52.3 points in the last three games.

• Purdue returned to No. 1 in this week’s AP Top 25 rankings for the second time this season. Purdue is the sixth Big Ten team to voted No. 1 twice in the same season (Indiana – 2013, 1993; Michigan – 1977, 1965; Ohio State – 2011). Purdue is 6-2 all-time as the nation’s No. 1-ranked team with both losses coming on buzzer-beaters by Rutgers.

• Zach Edey ranks No. 1 in the KenPom POY ratings by a significant margin and has been the game MVP in 15 of the 19 Purdue games that he has played in (missed New Orleans with the flu). Edey has scored 10 or more points in 36 straight games — the nation’s longest streak.

• Perhaps our favorite Zach Edey stat: Through his 19 games this year, he has more blocked shots (43) than personal fouls (29). He has also played 30 minutes 13 times this season after not doing it once in his first two seasons. Edey is averaging just 1.9 fouls / 40 minutes.

• Fletcher Loyer was named the Big Ten’s Player and Freshman of the Week (Jan. 17) after a 27-point, six 3-pointer game vs. Nebraska. He became the first freshman since Illinois’ Kofi Cockburn in Nov. 2019, to win Player of the Week honors, and the first Purdue freshman since Robbie Hummel in Feb. 2008, to win Player of the Week accolades. His three FOW honors are tied for the most in school history.



WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Purdue Football head coach Ryan Walters has finalized his coaching staff for 2023, his first season as the leader of the Boilermakers. After hiring coordinators Graham Harrell (Offense) and Kevin Kane (Defense) during his first week on the job, Walters spent his first month completing his staff and hitting the recruiting trail.

Joining Walters at Purdue are: Cory Patterson (Associate Head Coach/Wide Receivers), Sam Carter (Cornerbacks), Lamar Conard (Running Backs), Joe Dineen (Outside Linebackers), Seth Doege (Tight Ends), Brick Haley (Defensive Line), Matt Mattox (Offensive Line), Grant O’Brien (Safeties) and Kiero Small (Director of Strength and Conditioning).

“I am extremely excited and blessed to have this group of coaches join our Purdue family,” said Walters. “This staff is dedicated to developing real relationships on and off the field with the young men in our locker room. We have hit the ground running on the recruiting trail with energy and precision. I cannot wait for our team, in its totality, to get on the field this spring.”

Patterson, Dineen and O’Brien make the short trip from Champaign to West Lafayette to reunite with Walters and Kane. While Patterson was guiding running back Chase Brown to an All-American season, Dineen and O’Brien assisted Walters with the nation’s No. 1 scoring defense, all helping Illinois finish second in the Big Ten West behind Purdue.

Conard returns to his alma mater after five seasons at Miami (Ohio). The running backs coach played defensive back for the Boilermakers (1996-99), beginning his career as a walk-on before earning a scholarship and starting the final three seasons for legendary head coach Joe Tiller. A decade later (2007-08), he began his coaching career as one of Tiller’s graduate assistants.

Carter and Doege spent the past season at Ole Miss, where Carter coached the cornerbacks and Doege served as an analyst. Haley, a 31-year coaching veteran, ventures south after one season at Minnesota, while Mattox travels north from UTSA following three years in San Antonio. Carter and Haley worked alongside Walters at Missouri, helping turn the Tigers into one of the SEC’s top defensive units.  

Small becomes the new leader of Purdue Football’s strength and conditioning program after spending the past five seasons as the associate director of strength and conditioning at Michigan. Nate Rock (Associate Director), Austin Winfree (Associate Director), Tom Gordan (Assistant Director) and Greg Robinson (Assistant Director) have joined Small’s strength staff at Purdue.

Season tickets for the 2023 Purdue Football season are on sale now. Click here to purchase new season tickets. If you are a current season ticket holder and would like to renew for 2023, click here.

Cory Patterson – Associate Head Coach/Wide Receivers

Patterson spent five seasons as an assistant coach at Illinois, which included the past two years coaching the running backs. Patterson spent his first three seasons with the Illini as tight ends coach after three seasons as the highly successful head coach at Trinity Catholic High School in St. Louis.

This past year, Patterson guided Chase Brown to an All-America season. Becoming a finalist for the Doak Walker Award, Brown rushed for 1,643 yards to average 136.9 yards per game and rank third nationally. Under Patterson’s tutelage, the Illinois running back led the country in 100-yard games with 10 throughout the season.

Patterson was key to Illinois’ recruiting efforts, specifically in St. Louis. Two of the highest rated recruits in the modern era signed from St. Louis with Patterson at Illinois. Isaiah Williams, Patterson’s quarterback at Trinity, and Shammond Cooper, Trinity’s star linebacker, both came to Champaign-Urbana in 2019 as four-star prospects and top 150 recruits in the nation.

Walters on Patterson

“Coach Patterson brings a relationship-driven approach to his coaching style and techniques. He is an excellent recruiter, really detailed and is a student of the game. I’m excited for his energy to permeate throughout our locker room.”

Sam Carter – Cornerbacks

Carter makes the move to the Big Ten after gaining experience throughout the SEC in stops at Missouri, Arkansas and Ole Miss. In his lone season with Ole Miss, Carter mentored cornerback Deantre Prince, who led the team with 11 pass breakups to go along with one interception. In his two years in Fayetteville, Arkansas’ secondary quickly displayed its prowess as a talented ball-hawking group. The Razorbacks tallied 26 total interceptions since 2020, the second most in the SEC behind only Alabama. Carter helped lead Arkansas to a record of 9-4 in 2021, the program’s best mark since 2011.

Carter joined the Razorbacks from Missouri, where he served as a defensive quality control and analyst for Barry Odom alongside Purdue head coach Ryan Walters. Carter helped the Tigers’ defense rank as one of the best in the nation, particularly in the secondary, in 2019. Missouri’s pass defense ranked sixth in the FBS and second in the Southeastern Conference, allowing only 179.3 yards per game.

Carter was a standout, All-Big 12 safety at TCU prior to starting his coaching career. The New Orleans native played in 49 games for the Horned Frogs from 2011-14, starting 39 including all 38 over his final three years. As a senior, he was a semifinalist for the Jim Thorpe Award, a Senior CLASS Award finalist and a Senior CLASS Award Second Team All-American.

Walters on Carter

“Coach Carter is one of the more competitive individuals I’ve ever come across, beginning from our time spent together at Missouri. Not only was he an All-American football player, in my opinion, he’s an All-American coach. He will bring an energy and enthusiasm every day that is unmatched.”

Lamar Conard – Running Backs

Conard returns to his alma mater following five seasons as the running backs coach at Miami (Ohio). His first season at Miami was a memorable one, helping Alonzo Smith and Kenny Young reach new heights. Smith finished the year with a career-best 746 yards and nine scores, while Young combined for 751 yards and eight scores under Conard. In 2019, Jaylon Bester established career numbers in rushing yards (741) and touchdowns (14).

Conard came to Miami after nine seasons at Illinois State. For seven years, he coached running backs and served as the recruiting coordinator for the Redbirds. In his time with the running backs at ISU, Conard produced three 1,000-yard rushers.

Conard was a defensive back for the Boilermakers from 1996-99. He was the first walk-on at Purdue to be awarded a scholarship under Joe Tiller, doing so in 1997. He was a three-year starter and played in all 37 games during his final three seasons. His career totals included 118 tackles (68 solo, 50 assists), six pass breakups and four interceptions.

Walters on Conard

“Coach Conard is a former player here at Purdue, someone that has worn the Old Gold and Black and understands what it means to be a Boilermaker. On the recruiting trail, when we had this position open, I can’t tell you how many phone calls I got about his ability to recruit the state of Indiana. Being from here, putting sweat equity into this program, I’m excited about his passion and hunger to get to know and develop the players in his room.”

Joe Dineen – Outside Linebackers

During the 2022 season, Dineen helped coach the Illini outside linebackers alongside Kevin Kane. With Walters leading the way, Dineen assisted in guiding the nation’s best scoring defense. He joined Illinois from SMU after serving as a defensive graduate assistant under then-SMU defensive coordinator Kane.

Dineen was an All-American linebacker at Kansas from 2014-18. With the Jayhawks, he was a 2018 consensus All-American, AP All-American and two-time Sports Illustrated All-American. Dineen was also an All-Big 12 First Team selection and three-time team captain. Dineen twice led the NCAA in solo tackles per game and was the Big 12 leader in tackles and tackles-for-loss.

Off the field, he was recognized as a Senior Class All-American, a Ronnie Lott IMPACT Award and Jason Witten Man of the Year semifinalist and a nominee for the Allstate Good Works Team. Dineen was also a member of the Big 12 All-Academic Team, a two-time member of the Big 12 Commissioners Honor Roll and a member of the Athletic Directors Honor Roll.

Walters on Dineen

“Coach Dineen is a bright, young coach. He reminds me a lot of myself at that age, very in tuned to the details as a student of the game. Joe is a great people person, highly competitive, even-keeled in nature and will really push to get the most out of his position group.”

Seth Doege – Tight Ends

Doege (pronounced DAY-ghee) spent the 2022 campaign with Ole Miss following three years as USC. Prior to being promoted to tight ends coach in 2021, Doege was an offensive quality control analyst for the Trojans in 2019 and 2020.  He was instrumental in USC’s on-campus recruiting efforts, including playing a key role in helping the Trojans’ signing a highly-ranked 2021 class that features a pair of Top 100-rated quarterbacks.

Doege arrived at USC after three seasons (2016-18) at Bowling Green, the first as a graduate assistant, the second as the receivers coach and the last adding special teams coordinator to his receivers duties. Wideout Scott Miller was an All-Mid-American Conference first teamer in 2016, while catching 74 passes for 968 yards and 10 touchdowns.

Doege played quarterback at Texas Tech (2009-12), starting his final two seasons. As a junior in 2011, he was 398-of-581 for 4,004 yards and 28 TDs, set an NCAA completions percentage record when he hit 40-of-44 passes (90.9%) against New Mexico and led the Red Raiders to an upset over No. 3 Oklahoma.  As a 2012 senior, he completed 380-of-541 passes (70.2%) for 4,205 yards and 39 TDs (Top 5 nationally in passing yards, TDs, completions and completion percentage), passed for 504 yards in an upset over No. 5 West Virginia, threw seven TDs in a win over TCU, earned MVP of the Meineke Car Care Bowl and was a semifinalist for the Davey O’Brien Award. His 69.0% career completion mark was a school record. Doege spent the 2013 season on the practice squad of the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons, then played with the CFL’s Saskatchewan Roughriders in 2014.

Walters on Doege

“When I got a chance to meet Coach Doege during the interview process, I felt like I had known him for 10 years. He loves football and obviously has a quarterback background, but he has been really creative with his use of the tight ends. I am excited for him to bring those ideas from Ole Miss to our system at Purdue, and his knowledge of the game is unmatched.”

Brick Haley – Defensive Line

Haley brings 31 years of experience – both in college and in the NFL – to the Boilermakers. He has primarily coached the defensive line in his career, but has also been a defensive coordinator and coached linebackers. During his career, Haley has mentored 11 NFL Draft picks, including a pair of first round selections.

Making the move to the Big Ten, Haley spent the 2022 season at Minnesota as the defensive line coach. Haley’s line helped the Golden Gophers finish Top 10 nationally in scoring defense (third), third down defense (fifth), fewest first downs allowed (seventh) and total defense (ninth). Prior to Minnesota, Haley was at Missouri where he coached the defensive line for four seasons and also held the title of senior associate head coach. While at Missouri, alongside Ryan Walters, he mentored a defensive line that was routinely one of the top performing units in the Southeastern Conference.

Haley’s career includes stops all around the country, including: Texas (2015-16), LSU (2009-14), the Chicago Bears (2007-08), Mississippi State (2004-06), Georgia Tech (2002-03), Baylor (1999-2001), Clemson (1998), Houston (1997), Troy State (1994-96), Austin Peay (1991-93) and Arkansas (1990).

Walters on Haley

“Coach Haley brings experience and continuity within the staff. He has developed defensive lineman unlike anybody I have seen. His knowledge of footwork and technique, the way he demands the best from his players, it’s something that we are really excited about on the defensive side of the ball.”

Matt Mattox – Offensive Line

An 18-year coaching veteran, Mattox joined Purdue following three years at UTSA and helping turn the Roadrunners into one of the top Group of Five teams in the country. He was elevated to UTSA’s co-offensive coordinator in 2022, after serving as the Roadrunners’ run game coordinator and offensive line coach for two seasons. His offense averaged 476.0 yards per game, ranking 12th nationally, racking up the third-most first downs in the country and setting a school record (362). UTSA scored a Conference USA-best 36.8 points per game (14th nationally), including 48 to lead the Roadrunners past North Texas in the conference championship game. With Mattox’s offense leading the way, UTSA finished the 2022 campaign with an 11-3 record and a perfect mark (8-0) in league play.

Prior to UTSA, Mattox spent the 2019 season as the offensive coordinator and offensive line coach at McNeese State. His career also includes stops at USF (2017-18), Texas (2016), Tulsa (2015), Bowling Green (2014), Eastern Illinois (2013), Coffeyville Community College (2012), and Butler (Kan.) Community College (2007-11).

A native of Holton, Kansas, Mattox was a second team junior college All-American tight end at Butler Community College. He played his final two collegiate seasons (2002-03) at Houston, moving from tight end to offensive tackle prior to his senior season. As a senior, Mattox earned Second Team All-Conference USA honors at offensive tackle as the Cougars posted a 7-6 record and played in the Hawaii Bowl.

Walters on Mattox

“Coach Mattox is the coolest offensive line coach I have ever come across. He really understands the game and how to be innovative in both pass protection and on the ground running the football. We are excited about him getting to know and develop the offensive line room, helping bring a unique energy and style of play to Purdue.”

Grant O’Brien – Safeties

O’Brien’s final season in Champaign saw the Illini post an 8-4 record, holding opponents to 10 points or fewer in seven of those victories. He helped Purdue head coach Ryan Walters and defensive coordinator Kevin Kane position Illinois’ defense in the nation’s top 10 of 17 different categories, including the No. 1 scoring defense.

O’Brien joined Illinois following three years at Missouri as a defensive quality control analyst. He helped Missouri earn bids to the 2020 Music City Bowl and the 2018 Liberty Bowl during his time in Columbia, primarily with the Tigers’ defensive backs. O’Brien came to Missouri after stints at FIU (2017), Arizona Christian (2015-16), and Northern Arizona (2013-14).

O’Brien played collegiately at Northern Arizona University, contributing as a defensive back and on special teams, following two seasons at Glendale Community College (Arizona). During his time at Glendale, he played quarterback and defensive back and was selected as a special teams captain, helping the Gauchos win back-to-back Valley of the Sun Bowls. O’Brien was an All-Academic selection at Northern Arizona University and helped the team to an FCS playoff berth in 2012.

Walters on O’Brien

“Coach O’Brien is a high character, high IQ individual, and he cares about his players unlike anyone I have ever been around. He understands conceptually what we are trying to accomplish on defense. He is a diligent worker that will add tremendous value to our staff.”

Kiero Small – Director of Strength and Conditioning

During his time in Ann Arbor, Small mentored 13 NFL Draft picks and 12 First Team All-Big Ten honorees, as well as 10 All-Americans. Under Small’s tutelage, the Wolverines grew into a powerhouse, winning the Big Ten and making the College Football Playoff in each of the past two seasons.

Prior to his jump into the coaching ranks, Small spent two seasons in the NFL playing for the Seattle Seahawks, Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens. He was drafted by the Seahawks in the seventh round of the 2014 NFL Draft.

Small was a devastating blocking fullback for three seasons at Arkansas. He appeared in 25 games for the Razorbacks totaling 152 yards on 41 carries with four rushing touchdowns. He added one receiving touchdown on 20 career grabs. With Small coming out of the backfield in 2011, Arkansas finished the year ranked fifth in both major polls behind an 11-2 record and defeated Kansas State 29-16 in the 2012 Cotton Bowl Classic.

Walters on Small

“We are very excited about the energy and intensity that Kiero brings to the program. Ben Herbert at Michigan is one of the most respected strength coaches in the business, so I am eager to see Kiero’s personal spin on that style of strength program and that philosophy. He will be relationship driven, he will dive into the sciences behind strength and conditioning, and he will provide us a competitive edge to our locker room that will show up on Saturdays.”



WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – The Purdue women’s basketball team opens up a stretch of three straight games against ranked opposition Thursday night with a trip to No. 22 Illinois. Tipoff from the State Farm Center is set for 8 p.m. (ET) on B1G+.

Tim Newton will have all the action for the Purdue Radio Network on 95.3 BOB FM.


Purdue (13-6, 4-5) at No. 22 Illinois (16-4, 6-3)

Thursday, Jan. 26

Time: 8 PM (ET) 

TV: B1G+ 

Radio: 95.3 BOB FM 

Live Stats: Purduestats.com 


Purdue bounced back with a 75-56 win over Minnesota on Sunday afternoon at Mackey Arena. Cassidy Hardin connected on four of Purdue’s 10 3-pointers to finish with a team-high 14 points. A trio of other Boilermakers topped double figures with Jayla Smith posting 13, Lasha Petree with 12 and Rickie Woltman with 10. Purdue capitalized on 13 Minnesota turnovers to score 20 points.


• Purdue leads the all-time series with Illinois, 64-18. The Boilermakers are 3-2 when the Illini have been ranked.

• The 64 wins are the most Purdue has against a single opponent.

• Purdue enters its toughest stretch of the year against No. 22 Illinois, No. 2 Ohio State and No. 6 Indiana in its next three games. Purdue last faced three straight ranked opponents in the regular season during the 2000-01 campaign – No. 4 Notre Dame, No 20 LSU and No. 14 Stanford.

• The Boilermakers will face three straight ranked Big Ten teams in the regular season for the first time.

• Jeanae Terry continues her impressive streak as one of three players (Caitlin Clark – Iowa, Olivia Miles – Notre Dame) – to average six points, six rebounds and six assists this season. Terry ranks second in the Big Ten in assists (133) and assists per game (7.0).

• Abbey Ellis vaulted herself to the top of the Big Ten in free throw percentage at an 89.3%, going 50-56 at the line for the year.

• Rickie Woltman is coming off her best performance of the season with 10 points, eight rebounds in 24 minutes of work.

• Caitlyn Harper has finished in double figures in seven of the last 10 games. Nine of Harper’s 13 3-pointers have come in Big Ten play.

• Cassidy Hardin made a quartet of 3-pointers against Minnesota to give her 192 triples for her career. The Bargersville, Ind., native sits sixth in Purdue history and needs just eight more 3-pointers to become the fifth player in Purdue history to join the 200 club.

• Jayla Smith has finished in double figures in her last five contests, averaging 12 points per game at a 49% shooting clip.

• Caitlyn Harper sits just three points away from 1,500 for her career. The redshirt senior is averaged 11.1 points per game this season.

• Starting a game is key for the Boilermakers, as Purdue is 11-2 this season when holding a lead after the first quarter.



No. 23/21 Providence shot 56 percent from the field in taking a 79-58 win over Butler Wednesday night at the Amica Mutual Pavilion in Rhode Island.

With the result, Butler is now 11-11 on the season and 3-8 in BIG EAST play. Providence improve to 16-5 (8-2 BIG EAST).


Providence used a 13-0 run to turn a Butler 16-9 lead into a Friars’ 22-16 advantage with 8:45 remaining in the first half.

After Butler got within two with five minutes to play in the first half, Providence closed the opening 20 minutes on a 10-2 run to take a 36-26 halftime lead.

Providence scored eight of the first nine points after halftime to take a 17-point lead, and the Bulldogs would not get closer than 15 the rest of the way.


Providence went 30-for-54 from the field to register 55.6-percent shooting; the Friars shot 50 percent in the first half before shooting at a 61-percent clip in the second half.

PC scored 48 of their points in the paint.

The Friars had a 42-24 rebounding advantage.

Bryce Hopkins led Providence with 16 points; he was one of four Friars in double figures.

Devin Carter had a double-double of 10 points and 10 rebounds.

Eric Hunter Jr. led Butler with 12 points; Jayden Taylor added 10.

Butler shot 38-percent from the field.


Manny Bates returned to action for Butler after missing the last three games (knee).

Freshman Connor Turnbull had six points on two three-pointers. He has made his last six attempts from three-point range.

Providence won the first match-up between the two teams this season, 72-52, Dec. 29 at Hinkle Fieldhouse.

UP NEXT: The Bulldogs return home to host Seton Hall Saturday. Tickets are still available for the 4 p.m. tip at Hinkle Fieldhouse, which will also air on FS1.



QUEENS – Butler took a tough 67-65 loss to St. John’s on Wednesday night at Carnesecca Arena. The Bulldogs had the ball with a chance to tie the game on the final possession, but the Red Storm would get a stop. With the win, the Johnnies secured their 13th-straight home win to set a new program record.

How It Happened

Butler opened the game by scoring 15 points in each quarter, but they would trail the Red Storm by two at the half 32-30. Anna Mortag was the driving force behind the Butler offense with a game-high 13 points in 14 minutes of playing time.

Mortag shot 3-for-4 from behind the arc helping BU to shoot 55% from distance in the first half (6-11). St. John’s took a different approach by pounding the ball inside. The Johnnies shot 58 percent from the field over the first 20 minutes getting eight points from Rayven Peeples and seven off the bench from Unique Drake. 22 of their first 32 points were scored in the paint.

The Bulldogs outscored St. John’s 14-9 at the start of the third quarter to grab a 44-41 lead at the media timeout. A 10-0 run allowed BU to expand their lead to 49-41 with 3:10 to play, but the Johnnies roared back with an 8-0 run to tie the game at 49-49. STJ beat the buzzer to end the third quarter and the two teams would be separated by just two points heading into the final 10 minutes.

The start of the fourth quarter was a grind that featured just four combined points over the first five minutes. The final five minutes however were action packed for the fans at Carnesecca. Jaynes tied the game at 57-57 and the Bulldogs took a slim one-point lead at 60-59 with 3:26 to play in the game. Drake regained the lead for STJ and Everett hit a huge 3-pointer to push the score to 64-60. Butler answered with a big three from Shay Frederick to get back within one-point at 64-63.

Butler was forced to foul in an attempt to extend the game and the strategy paid off. They got the ball back with 10.3 seconds with a two-point deficit and called timeout to advance the ball. BU took the possession down to the final seconds and had a good look for the tie, but the ball rimmed out to give STJ the 67-65 victory.

Postgame Parkinson Quotes

“It was a good first half and we were able to get the lead in the third quarter but obviously, we knew St. John’s was going to punch back. Each team competed and it was a battle out there, a grind it out game. I’m really encouraged by how our team played. I thought Sydney Jaynes battled. I thought Rachel played great and Anna had some nice offensive plays, but tonight collectively, our team showed some toughness. We wanted to walk out of here with a win, but we are heading in the right direction and we will continue to learn from these types of games.”

Stat of the Game

Butler shot 50 percent from 3-point range, making 10 of their 20 attempts.

Inside the Box Score

– Anna Mortag hit three of her four 3-point attempts to net 15 points

– Rachel McLimore also scored 15 points for the Bulldogs while adding five assists

– Sydney Jaynes had 12 points, five assists, four rebounds and a block at St. John’s

– There were 18 lead changes and seven ties tonight

– Each team scored 35 second half points

– Butler shot 48 percent from the field and St. John’s even better at 52 percent

– Each team collected 26 rebounds Wednesday night

– Pittsburgh transfer Jayla Everett was limited to just nine points

– Kadaja Bailey played in her 135th game for St. John’s tonight to set a new program record.

– Bailey has scored in double figures in 21 of her last 24 games

– Eight of the 12 players on St. John’s have played four years of college basketball

Up Next

The Bulldogs will return to Hinkle Fieldhouse this weekend to host the Marquette Golden Eagles on Sunday, Jan. 29. The 2 PM tip will stream live on FloSports.com.



FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The IUPUI basketball team had a road upset bid fall just short at Purdue Fort Wayne on Wednesday night (Jan. 25) as the Jaguars were thwarted by the Mastodons inside Gates Sports Center, 81-75. Sophomore Jlynn Counter matched his career-high with 27 points to lead three Jaguars in double-digits and junior John Egbuta notched 14 points off the bench.

Reigning #HLMBB Freshman of the Week Vincent Brady II closed with 12 points. Deonte Billups led the Mastodons with a career-high 26 points and seven rebounds and Jarred Godfrey contributed 22 points for the victors.

“Tough game; really tough game,” head coach Matt Crenshaw said. “I was proud of our fight and how we kept fighting back. I thought we played through some adversity tonight and I’m proud of our guys for continuing to fight. We never stopped. We missed some free throws and we missed some open shots and maybe the outcome is different. Our young guys are growing up right in front of us though. We’re a much different team now than we were a month ago.”

IUPUI was down 68-57 with 5:29 left after Godfrey made a pair of foul shots before the guests rallied furiously to get back within two. The Jaguars scored seven straight points in less than a minute as Counter made two free throws, Armon Jarrard then scored on a steal and layup and after a defensive stop, Counter buried a long three with 1:49 left.

Purdue Fort Wayne’s (14-8, 6-5 HL) Ra Kpedi pushed the lead back out to four at the free throw line and Counter missed a tough jumper on the ensuing possession. The Mastodons scored again when Anthony Roberts put back a miss with 28 seconds left for a 78-72 lead.

IUPUI was victim to oddity in the final seconds as Jonah Carrasco was fouled as Counter brought the ball into the frontcourt. Counter went to the line, made the first and was delivered the ball for the second free throw before play was stopped. The officials gathered, watched a replay and retracted the point before sending Carrasco to the line. Carrasco misfired on both attempts, keeping the deficit at six before sealing the six-point victory.

The first half was a track meet as the teams played to a 40-40 halftime score, buoyed by Counter’s 18 and Billups’ 21 points. IUPUI shot 55 percent from the floor in the opening 20 minutes while nine of the Mastodons’ field goals came from behind the arc.

IUPUI (3-18, 0-11 HL) was the first to flinch at the start of the second half as Purdue Fort Wayne opened the second stanza with eight straight points and held the Jags off the scoreboard for more than five-and-a-half minutes. The Jags didn’t score a second half field goal for nearly eight minutes when Egbuta completed a three-point play.

The two teams combined to shoot 36 second half free throws as IUPUI closed the game at 15-of-24 (62.5 percent) from the stripe and the hosts went 22-of-28 (78.6 percent).

Carrasco had five points, five boards, three assists and two blocked shots off the IUPUI bench as Chris Osten was limited to just seven minutes before leaving with an injury. Egbuta made 6-of-10 shots for his fourth straight game in double-figures and Jarrard tallied eight points off the bench.

IUPUI will return to action on Sunday (Jan. 29) when they take on Cleveland State at 3:00 p.m. inside CSU’s Wolstein Center. That game will be broadcast on ESPN+.



MUNCIE, Ind. – The Ball State women’s basketball team (15-4, 6-1 MAC) remained undefeated at home (10-0) in Worthen Arena after an impressive 89-66 victory over Akron (13-5, 4-3 MAC) in midweek MACtion Wednesday night.

Ball State controlled the tempo of tonight’s ball game from start to finish and never lost sight of the lead the entire 40 minutes of play.

A big part of tonight’s success for the Cardinals was rebounding as Ball State won that battle over Akron, 40-31.

The Cardinals opened tonight’s contest with an impressive 16-3 run, capped off by a jumper from redshirt senior Anna Clephane. Ball State’s defense held Akron to only 25 percent shooting and 11 points in the first frame. The Cardinals high-intensity defense allowed Ball State to take a 25-11 edge over Akron after the first quarter.

The all-around offensive success in the second frame was unmatched. The Cardinals were making good clean passes and continued to dominate the Zips throughout the remainder of the first half.

Ball State shot a staggering 61 percent (8-13) from the field in the second stanza and went 8-11 from behind arc. The Cardinals’ hot shooting hand earned them the 46-25 cushion over the Zips at intermission.

After the break, Ball State couldn’t be slowed down by the Akron as sophomore Ally Becki drained a 3-pointer at the 4:28 mark in the third period to put Ball State up by 26 (59-33).

From then on out the Cardinals never looked back despite the Zips efforts and would win the ball game by a 23-point margin.

Five Cardinals reached double figure scoring tonight with sophomore Madelyn Bischoff leading the way with a career best 20 points after shooting 8-10 from the field and 4-5 from the 3-point line. Becki chipped in 13 points while also dishing out eight assists. Both senior Annie Rauch and sophomore Alex Richard each had 12 points apiece and Clephane would end the night with 10.

Prior to tonight’s contest, Clephane was presented with her 1,000th career point commemorative basketball.

 The Ball State women’s basketball team continues Mid-American Conference action Saturday when it travels to Ohio for a 1 pm tip-off at the Convocation Center.



SOUTH BEND, Ind. — If you’re a big fan of defensive showdowns, this may not be the game for you.

On Thursday, the ACC’s top two offenses will clash at Purcell Pavilion as No. 24 Florida State (18-4, 7-2) visits No. 7 Notre Dame (16-2, 7-1). The teams average 85.8 and 79.7 points per game, respectively. The Irish are 11-1 all-time and 4-0 at home against the Seminoles, but earning a victory in the mid-week context will be anything but easy.

The Seminoles are led by arguably the nation’s best freshman, guard Ta’Niya Latson. The Miami native has won nine of the 11 ACC Rookie of the Week honors, which is currently tied for the most in conference history. Latson is posting 23.6 points every time she takes the floor. That mark ranks sixth nationally.

But Notre Dame has been up to the task of limiting explosive players before, holding six of eight conference opponents to fewer than 60 points. No one has topped 63.

“[Defense] was a point of emphasis coming into the season,” said Niele Ivey, Karen and Kevin Family Head Coach. “After losing Maya [Dodson], I knew we needed to be better individual defenders. I’m really proud of where we are at this point. That’s a great stat for us. I try to emphasize it to the team to be positive and show what we are doing well.”

When it comes to scoring baskets of their own, the Irish are down 3-point specialist Dara Mabrey for the first full game of her Irish career. The New Jersey guard suffered a torn ACL and tibial plateau fracture in the early moments of Sunday’s game against Virginia, prematurely ending her Notre Dame career.

“I think the team did a great job of keeping their composure during the game,” Ivey said. “It was very emotional for everybody to see their sister go down and for me to see my player and leader go down.

“They were off Monday, so we all had a chance to wrap our arms around her. Yesterday was our first practice without her. I thought it went well. I had to put people in different situations, but you never can replace somebody like Dara. Everyone just has to try to do a little bit more, and I expect them to do that.”

A new starter has not been named. Sophomore Sonia Citron was hot from deep against the Hoos, sinking six of her seven attempts on the day. She is averaging 13.6 points, 6.3 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game. While shooting from behind the arc is not necessarily their specialty, Olivia Miles, Maddy Westbeld and Cassandre Prosper have shown they can be a threat in that area on any given day.



NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The University of Notre Dame hockey team hosts the Wisconsin Badgers, Jan. 27-28, in a pair of tilts inside Compton Family Ice Arena.

Puck drop on Friday night is set for 7:30 p.m. followed by a 6 p.m. start the following night to conclude the season series with the Badgers. Fans are encouraged to stay following Saturday night’s contest for a post-game autograph session with members of the Irish hockey program. Posters for signing will be available, while supplies last.


Notre Dame most recently split the season series at Penn State, picking up a night one victory, 2-1, which saw senior netminder Ryan Bischel post a career-high 52 saves. The team then fell Saturday, 3-2 to finish 2-2 against the Nittany Lions this season.

In two games in State College, Pa., Bischel registered 94 saves in goal for a .958 save percentage over the two-game stretch.

Their last home weekend featured the Irish facing off against No. 2/2 Minnesota for a two-game series. Notre Dame opened up the weekend with a shootout victory over the Golden Gophers, as Ryan Bischel made 36 saves between the pipes Friday night, including four highlight reel saves in the overtime session to keep the Irish hopes alive.

In the shootout, Ryder Rolston net the lone goal for either side as the Irish picked up the extra point in conference play.

The week prior at Wisconsin, the Irish split with the Badgers. After a 2-0 loss in game one, Notre Dame bounced back to a season-best six goals Saturday night en route to the 6-4 victory.

Bischel picked up his nation-leading fourth shutout of the season in  the team’s first game of the calendar year, defeating Alaska, 2-0, stopping all 25 shots faced in the contest.

The Irish closed out the first half of their season with an 8-8-2 record following a split with No. 5/5 Penn State at home to enter the holiday break.

In game two of that series, Bischel stopped a career-high 47 saves as the Irish picked up a 5-3 win, and amassed 81 saves over the two game weekend.

With 824 total saves this season, Bischel currently ranks first nationally in the category while his .928 save percentage is fifth-best.


Notre Dame opened the second half of their Big Ten slate with a road series against Wisconsin, Jan. 6-7, splitting the series in Madison against the Badgers.

The Irish recorded their highest goal total in game two of the weekend series, firing six pucks into the net for the 6-4 final.

Both Trevor Janicke and Drew Bavaro had career-high nights in the game two win, registering two goals and an assist each for three point nights.

All-time, the Irish trail the Badgers 31-49-9 in series history, with ND just narrowly trailing the home record 16-20-5.


Three Irish skaters were recently named to the Hobey Baker Memorial Award ballot as Ryan Bischel, Trevor Janicke and Nick Leivermann were all nominated for the award handed out annually to the top collegiate hockey student-athlete.



SOUTH BEND, Ind. – University of Notre Dame infielder Karina Gaskins, along with 49 others from across the country, has been named to the Top 50 Watch List for the 2023 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year award. The 2022 Atlantic Coast Conference Player of the Year is one of six total selections from the ACC.

Gaskins earned All-American status after her record setting sophomore season. The Edison, N.J. native finished the 2022 season with an ACC-leading .428 average, hitting 13 home runs, 12 doubles and driving in a conference-best 61 runs. She played in all 52 games of her sophomore season, breaking the school record for on-base percentage (.555), previously held by outfielder Abby Sweet’s .537 mark set in the 2021 season.

Gaskins and the Irish open the 2023 season in San Diego February 9th as they will take on the Arizona State Sun Devils.



FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Deonte Billups scored a career-high 26 points and Jarred Godfrey added 22 in Purdue Fort Wayne’s 81-75 victory over IUPUI on Wednesday (Jan. 25) evening at the Gates Sports Center.

Billups was money for the ‘Dons in the first half. He scored 21 points in the opening frame with six 3-pointers. He finished with a career-best seven 3-pointers. He also had seven rebounds and no turnovers on the night. Godfrey did his damage in the second half, scoring 16 in the final 20 minutes. Godfrey added six rebounds and three assists to his line.

Not to be lost in the box score was Anthony Roberts’ second half. He had 11 points including three thunderous dunks. His final dunk came just after he hit a 3-pointer to help the ‘Dons go up 63-55 with 7:20 left.

The ‘Dons took a lead as large as 11 in the second half only to see IUPUI cut it to two at 74-72 with just over a minute remaining. It would get no closer as Ra Kpedi made a pair of free throws on the next possession to put the game away.

Kpedi had nine points and seven rebounds. He had three on the offensive end to help the ‘Dons grab a season-high 18 total offensive rebounds. It is the most offensive rebounds for the ‘Dons in a game since recording 18 at Iowa State on Dec. 22, 2019.

IUPUI was lead by Jlynn Counter’s game-high 27 points.

The ‘Dons shot 13-of-34 from three. IUPUI was 4-of-18 from beyond the arc. The game featured 10 lead changes and seven ties. IUPUI went 15-of-24 from the free throw line. Purdue Fort Wayne was 22-of-28.

IUPUI falls to 3-19 (0-11 Horizon League). Purdue Fort Wayne improves to 14-8 (6-5 Horizon League). The ‘Dons are back in action on Friday at Cleveland State.



FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The Purdue Fort Wayne women’s basketball team will hit the road to play at Oakland on Thursday night (Jan. 25) in Rochester, Michigan.

Game Day Information

Who: Oakland Golden Grizzlies

When: Thursday, January 26 | 7 PM

Where: Rochester, Mich. | Athletics Center O’Rena

Live Stats: Link

Watch: ESPN+

Game Notes: Purdue Fort Wayne | Oakland | Horizon League

Know Your Foe

Oakland is squarely in the middle of the Horizon League standings halfway through the league season at 10-9, 5-5. The Golden Grizzlies are led by Brooke Quarles-Daniels, who is averaging 11.5 points per game in her freshman season. She has been named Horizon League Freshman of the Week four times this year. After three-straight wins over NKU, Wright State and Detroit Mercy, OU fell to IUPUI last time out.

The Series

Oakland leads the all-time series against he Mastodons 19-10 and have won the last eight matchups. As Horizon League foes, the two teams have played about as close as any rivalry in the league. The Golden Grizzlies have won the last five meetings by an average of 6.0 points and the last three by 2.3 points.

It’s Not Over Until It’s Over

The Mastodons had three deficits of 10 points or more this season from which they came back to win: Bellarmine (10), Milwaukee (11) and Wright State (13).

She’s Back!

After four games of four points or less, Amellia Bromenschenkel has averaged 14.3 points per game in the last three games.

Sharing the Sugar

Audra Emmerson has a career assist-to-turnover ratio of 1.5 in her two years with the ‘Dons. She has 99 assists and 67 turnovers.

Doing Things the Wright Way

In the game at Wright State on January 22, the ‘Dons…

• Shot 78.6 percent from the floor and 83.3 percent from 3-point range in the second quarter

• Overcame a 13-0 start to the game and won by 17, a 30-point swing

• Hit 13 3-pointers, the most against a league foe since Feb. 6, 2015

• Had six players hit a 3-pointer

• Shot 54.2 percent from 3, their best mark against a Division I team since North Dakota on Jan. 5, 2020

• Out-rebounded Wright State 37-25, a season-best margin

On That Milwaukee Game…

• The 11-point comeback was the largest since December 13, 2019

• The nine turnovers was the fewest against a Division I foe since February 27, 2020

• All five starters scored in double-digits for the first time since November 12, 2017

• The 19-0 run was the largest against a Division I opponent in program history

Defense (Clap, Clap) Defense

Purdue Fort Wayne has held its opponents to 64 points or fewer in 10 games this season.

In The Wins…

In the Mastodons’ wins this year, Amellia Bromenschenkel is recording 17.4 points and 6.3 rebounds with a 56.2 percent shooting clip and a 50.0 percent 3-point shooting percentage. She is also averaging 2.0 steals, 1.4 assists and 0.6 blocks per game in those games.

Shayla Show

Shayla Sellers had one of her best games as a Mastodon against IUPUI on January 4. She recorded 23 points with a 69.2 percent clip from the floor and 50 percent from the 3-point line, six rebounds, four steals, three blocks and an assist. Her points, blocks and steals all at least tied a season-high mark.

The Best Choice For Defensive Player of the Year

In Horizon League play, Shayla Sellers is second in the league with 2.3 steals per game and is 10th in the league with 0.8 blocks per game. She is the only player in the league that is in the top 14 in both categories.


Purdue Fort Wayne is second in the Horizon League and 67th in the country with 9.5 steals per game. The ‘Dons also force the 64th-most turnovers in the country at 19.21 per game, a league-best.

Especially Those Two!

In league play, Amellia Bromenschenkel and Shayla Sellers are first and second in the league with 2.4 and 2.3 steals per game.

Checking In On The Standings

At the halfway mark of Horizon League play, the Mastodons are eighth in the league standings. They are just one game out of sixth. If the current standings were to hold, the Mastodons would host a Horizon League Championship first round game on February 28.

Buy Stock, Don’t Sell(ers)

Shayla Sellers ranks in the top-10 in program history in career free throw percentage with at least 100 makes.

1. Haley Seibert            (.868 – 2011-15)

2. Amanda Hyde            (.861 – 2010-14)

3. Jamie Holderman      (.836 – 1999-01)

4. Jordan Zuppe            (.819 – 2007-11)

5. Teena Merrell            (.818 – 1986-90)

6. Shayla Sellers           (.807 – 2019-present)

7. Lisa Miller                  (.804 – 1988-92)

8. Leah Sheets              (.795 – 1994-98)

9. Kamilah Carter          (.795 – 2014-16)

10. Hannah Albrecht     (.793 – 2017-20)

Chasing 1,000

There are three Mastodons that are nearing the 1,000-point mark in their careers: Sylare Starks (821), Shayla Sellers (752), Riley Ott (738).

Shayla The Starter

Shayla Sellers has started in 96 of the 97 games in which she has played in her four years at Purdue Fort Wayne. She has only missed three games in her career, all coming in 2021-22 due to injury. She is fourth in program history in starts, with the next player on the list (De’Jour Young) at 103.

Recent Stats

In the last three games…

• Amellia Bromenschenkel is averaging 14.3 points and 5.0 rebounds per game while shooting 50 percent from 3-point range

• Shayla Sellers is scoring 12.3 points per game with a 52.2 percent shooting percentage

• Ryin Ott is shooting 45.5 percent from 3-point range for 10.0 points per game

• Jazzlyn Linbo is shooting 58.8 percent from the floor

• Aubrey Stupp is shooting 60 percent from the floor

• The team is shooting 43.8 percent from 3-point range

• The Mastodons are averaging 12.0 turnovers per game, down from 16.1 for the season

Some More on Free Throws

Sylare Starks has been spectacular from the free throw line in her career as a Mastodon. She would be the best in program history for career percentages if she met the minimum made requirements. She is 39-for-41 for 95.1 percent as a ‘Don, which includes a 16-of-16 effort this season.

3-Point Threats

Purdue Fort Wayne takes 27.1 3-pointers per game, which is the second-most in the Horizon League and 11th in the nation.

Ace Amellia

Amellia Bromenschenkel has seven games in her career where has recorded at least one point, rebound, steal, block and assist.

Block Party

Purdue Fort Wayne is second in the Horizon League and just outside the top-100 nationally with 3.4 blocks per game.

Linbo Limbo

Jazzlyn Linbo is third in the Horizon League with 25 blocks this season.

Last Time Out

Purdue Fort Wayne used a strong 3-point shooting effort to beat Wright State 72-55. The ‘Dons shot 54.2 percent (13-of-24) from 3-point range.

Coming Up

The Mastodons will visit Detroit Mercy for their second game against the Titans on Saturday (Jan. 28).



EVANSVILLE, Ind. – Giving one of the top teams in the Missouri Valley Conference everything it could handle, the University of Evansville men’s basketball team put up a strong fight on Wednesday evening before dropping a 73-64 decision against Belmont inside the Ford Center.

Marvin Coleman II and Yacine Toumi recorded 15 points apiece.  Both connected on six field goals with Toumi tying for the team lead with nine boards.  Antoine Smith Jr. recorded 14 points while hauling in a career-best nine rebounds.  Ben Sheppard paced Belmont with 23 points and 10 caroms, both game highs.

“Our staff has put an emphasis on getting off to a better start and we were able to do that tonight.  Having seven assists and one turnover led to a 9-point lead,” UE head coach David Ragland said.  “One thing to work on is that 6-8 minute stretch where teams respond and punch back.  We did a nice job of playing a good 32 minutes, but we need to make it 40 minutes.  I think we gave ourselves a chance to win and a chance to teach.”

Hitting their first three attempts, Belmont scored the first five points on their way to an 8-3 lead.  Antoine Smith Jr. got the Aces on the board with a 3-point play.  The early run by the Bruins saw them open the night 5-of-6 from the field and 3-for-3 from outside as they took a 13-8 lead.

Evansville countered in a big way as a pair of 3-pointers by Yacine Toumi highlighted a 14-0 run that saw the Purple Aces take a 22-13 lead.  Smith finished the run with two triples of his own as UE connected on five field goals in a row.  Trailing by a score of 24-16, the Bruins posted eight in a row to tie it up midway through the period.  UE’s offense missed nine shots in a row while turning it over three times over a span of 5:32.

Toumi and Marvin Coleman II converted baskets that put the Aces back in front at 28-24 but Belmont completed the period on a 12-4 run to hold a 36-32 advantage at halftime.  Smith had 14 points and 6 rebounds in the first 20 minutes while Ben Sheppard paced Belmont with 16 points at the break.

Gage Bobe hit a jumper for the first points of the second half before Belmont scored the next seven to go up 43-34.  The Aces remained within striking distance when a putback by Toumi made it a 58-51 as the game entered its final nine minutes.  Belmont responded with consecutive triples that solidified a 64-51 lead.

Coleman kept the Aces in the thick of it, posting consecutive 3-point plays to keep the deficit around 10 points but the Bruins continued to hold strong and took the game by a final score of 73-64.  Belmont finished the game shooting 49.1% while the Aces shot 39.7%.  The Bruins outrebounded UE by a 38-33 tally.

On Saturday, the Aces return to the road for a 6 p.m. game at Valparaiso.



EVANSVILLE, Ind. – University of Southern Indiana Men’s and Women’s Swimming & Diving concludes their inaugural regular season on Saturday when they host Eastern Illinois University at the USI Aquatics Center with an 11 a.m. start.

This will be the final contest for the Screaming Eagles before they travel to Minneapolis, Minnesota for the Summit League Championships February 22-25.


The USI Men’s Swimming & Diving team fell in their last contest to Southern Illinois University, 154-75. Freshman Carson Faley (Dixon, Illinois) led the way for the Eagles, recording two second place finishes in the 200 and 500-Yard Freestyles. USI also took second and third in the 200-Yard Freestyle Relay. Freshman Connor Harden (Centennial, Colorado) snagged two third place finishes for the Eagles in the 100-Yard Backstroke and 200-Yard IM.

USI was able to take all 26 points from diving as freshman Lane Pollock (Boonville, Indiana) and junior Donnevun Banks split the two events. Pollock earned a first-place finish in the 1-meter, earning 249.00 points, while Banks took first in the 3-meter, earning 239.25 points.

The Eagles have had 10 different swimmers set season and school bests this season. Faley leads USI with three bests in the 200-Yard Butterfly and the 200 and 500-Yard Freestyles. Freshmen Caleb Davis (Spring, Texas) and Gabriel Groves (New Carlisle, Indiana) both have two bests. Davis leads the team in the 100 and 200-Yard Breaststrokes while Groves leads in the 100-Yard Backstroke and 100-Yard Freestyle. Sophomore Payton Buse (Lynnville, Indiana) and freshmen Creed Loy (Knoxville, Tennessee) and Grant VanWanzeele (Plainfield, Indiana) lead the team in the final three freestyle events. Buse leading the 50-Yard, Loy in the 1000-Yard, and VanWanzeele in the 1650-Yard. Freshmen Caleb Beaven (Newburgh, Indiana) and Colin Lee (Lakeland, Tennessee) lead the team in the 200 and 400-Yard IM, respectively. Freshmen Liam Murray (Indianapolis, Indiana) and Gregory Benson (Plainfield, Illinois) round out the pack for the Eagles as Murray leads the team in the 200-Yard Backstroke and Benson leads in the 100-Yard Butterfly.

USI Women

The USI Women’s Swimming & Diving team fell to Southern Illinois last Saturday, 194-46. Freshman Mattilynn Smith (Morgantown, Kentucky) recorded two second place finishes for the Eagles in the 500 and 1000-Yard Freestyles. Sophomore Adele Schnautz (Evansville, Indiana) and freshman Kate Hilgarth (Indianapolis, Indiana) each took a second-place finish as well. Schnautz in the 200-Yard IM and Hilgarth in the 100-Yard Backstroke.

Freshman Autumn Turley (Hobart, Indiana) finished seventh in both the 1-meter and 3-meter dives. Earning 181.42 points in the 1-meter and 143.77 points in the 3-meter.

The Eagles have six different swimmers that lead the team in season and school bests this season. Smith leads the way for USI, leading in four categories. She leads the team in the 200, 500, 1000, and 1650-Yard Freestyles. Hilgarth follows Smith with three team bests in the 100 and 200-Yard Backstrokes as well as the 50-Yard Freestyle. Freshmen Sarah-Catherine Dawson (Prospect, Kentucky) and Hannah Gardner (Bowling Green, Kentucky) as well as Schnautz all have two team bests. Dawson leads the team in the 100 and 200-Yard Butterflys, Gardner leads in the 100 and 200-Yard Breastrokes, and Schnautz leads the team in the 200 and 400-Yard IM, respectively. Freshman Emily McIntosh (Huntertown, Indiana) rounds out the leaders in the 100-Yard Freestyle.

Eastern Illinois Panthers

The Eastern Illinois Men opened their season with four losses at the Buter Double Dual before returning home and capturing a win over Valparaiso University. The Panthers would then lose three straight meets against Bellarmine University, Ball State University, and at the University of Evansville/Illinois State University tri-meet. EIU then earned a fifth-place finish at the A3 Performance Invitational, finishing just above USI. After a loss to Lewis University, the Panthers have won their last two meets against Valparaiso and Wabash College.

The Eastern Illinois Women opened their season with five losses at the Butler Double Dual before returning home and capturing a win over Valparaiso and then taking down Bellarmine. The Panthers would then fall in three straight meets against Ball State, Evansville, and Illinois State before earning a third-place finish at the A3 Performance Invitational, USI took fifth at the event. EIU then fell to Lewis before earning a second victory over Valparaiso.

Eastern Illinois will host Southern Illinois on Thursday before traveling to Evansville.

Tickets will be available at the door- $5 for adults 18+; $3 for ages 3-17; and those under 3 are free. USI students and employees are free. Doors will open at 9:30 a.m., and the USI Aquatic Center’s Capacity is 285.



EVANSVILLE, Ind. – University of Southern Indiana Women’s Basketball returns home to Screaming Eagles Arena Thursday at 5 p.m. for a second go-around against Eastern Illinois University (ticket information). Following Thursday’s home game, USI will travel Saturday at 1 p.m. for the second conference meeting against the University of Tennessee at Martin.

Both games can be seen live with a subscription to ESPN+ and heard on 95.7 FM The Spin (http://957thespin.com).

USI Women’s Basketball enters the week and the halfway point of the Ohio Valley Conference season with a 9-10 overall record and a 3-5 record in OVC games. USI is in a three-way tie for sixth in the OVC standings. Thursday’s opponent, Eastern Illinois (16-3, 8-0), is first in the OVC, while Saturday’s opponent, UT Martin (7-12, 4-5), is fifth.

The Screaming Eagles are coming off a split road swing last week, beating Lindenwood University 73-60 last Thursday before dropping a 78-69 contest at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville on Saturday. The win at Lindenwood was highlighted by a career-high 31 points from senior forward Hannah Haithcock (Washington Courthouse, Ohio). The performance was the third time this season that Haithcock set a new career mark. Saturday’s game at SIUE was highlighted by the individual performance of junior forward Meredith Raley (Haubstadt, Indiana). Raley tallied a game-high 19 points, scoring 10 of the 19 in the fourth quarter. Raley led USI with eight rebounds and four assists in the contest.

Sophomore guard Vanessa Shafford (Linton, Indiana) has been a steady force all season for the Screaming Eagles, but she’s been especially consistent in scoring the basketball in the last nine games. Shafford has scored in double figures in each of the last nine games, averaging 13.2 points per game. That average is second on the team behind Haithcock, who is averaging 16 points per outing in the last nine games.

Haithcock paces the Screaming Eagles on the season at 14.7 points per game and is second on the squad with 6.0 rebounds per contest. Shafford and Raley are second on USI in scoring with 13.2 points per game. Shafford tops the team with 7.0 rebounds per outing.

Last time out at SIUE, graduate forward Ashlynn Brown (Perrysburg, Ohio) had a solid game, scoring 10 points on 4-5 shooting with five rebounds. With 725 career points and over 500 rebounds entering the week, Brown is one of 13 USI players all-time to have at least 725 career points and 500 career rebounds.

Looking at Thursday’s matchup, Eastern Illinois has won all three series meetings against USI, including a 69-58 win in Charleston, Illinois earlier this season on December 31. In that game, EIU jumped out in front, and while the Screaming Eagles fought back in the fourth quarter, USI ran out of time.

Eastern Illinois is led by senior guard Lariah Washington, who leads the OVC at 18.4 points per game. Sophomore forward Macy McGlone leads Eastern Illinois on the glass with 7.5 rebounds per game while second in scoring behind Washington at 12.3 points per contest.

On Saturday, USI will face UT Martin for the second time in two weeks, as the Skyhawks took the first all-time meeting between the two schools on January 14 by a final score of 63-60. USI led that game 43-33 entering the fourth quarter, but UT Martin rallied to outscore USI 30-17 in the final frame to capture the win.

Dealing with several injuries this season, UT Martin is actively led in scoring by freshman forward Sharnecce Currie-Jelks with over 13 points per game. Currie-Jelks also leads the Skyhawks with 6.8 rebounds a game.

USI will look to avenge the results from the first meetings of the season against both opponents this week and flip the scoreboard to earn regular-season splits against both schools.

After Saturday’s trip to UT Martin, the Screaming Eagles will return to Screaming Eagles Arena next week for a two-game homestand against Tennessee State University next Thursday and against Morehead State University next Saturday. Thursday’s tip-off time is 5 p.m. and Saturday’s start time will be 1 p.m. The Saturday game against Morehead State will be homecoming and family weekend on the USI campus.



Valparaiso (3-14, 1-7 MVC)

Game #18 – Jan. 27, 2023 – 6 p.m.

Illinois State (13-5, 7-1 MVC)

Athletics-Recreation Center (5,000) – Valparaiso, Ind.

Next Up in Valpo Basketball: The Valpo women’s basketball team opens a stretch of five home games out of its next six contests on Friday evening when the Beacons welcome MVC co-leader Illinois State to the ARC. Valpo plays just one road game between now and Feb. 17.

Previously: Valpo trailed Big Ten foe Wisconsin in Madison Wednesday evening by just two at halftime, but the host Badgers pulled away in the second half as the Beacons fell by a 59-44 final. Making her return to her home state, Leah Earnest led Valpo with 16 points and 13 rebounds, while Ilysse Pitts tied her career best with eight rebounds.

Following Valpo Basketball: Streaming Video: ESPN3

Radio: WVUR

Streaming Audio: TuneIn app

Links for live coverage: Available via ValpoAthletics.com

Head Coach Mary Evans: Mary Evans is in her fifth year at the helm of the program in 2022-23 and owns a record of 51-82. Evans has made an impact on the program in her first four years, raising the team’s level of play to be competitive in a strong Missouri Valley Conference. Evans’ preferred style of play has been a big part of the program’s turnaround, as Valpo has led the MVC in 3-pointers made per game in each of the last three seasons and in steals per game in two of the last three years.

Series Notes: Illinois State leads the all-time series over Valpo, 10-4, including wins in both of last season’s meetings. The Redbirds won in Normal, 65-49, to open the season series and then earned an 85-80 victory at the ARC. Grace White averaged 17.5 points and 7.5 rebounds per game over the two meetings, while Carie Weinman – after missing the road defeat – poured in 22 points on 9-of-10 shooting off the bench in the meeting in Valpo.


…and @ValleyHoops

– Valpo was picked to finish in 10th place in the MVC preseason poll, totaling 197 points, just 10 points behind Evansville.

– Valpo is in its sixth season as a member of the Missouri Valley Conference.

– The Valley was ranked 10th in conference NET last year, was ranked seventh nationally in conference NET in 2020-21 and was eighth nationally in conference RPI in 2019-20.

…looking back at last year

– Valpo finished last year with an 11-19 overall record, but was strong in MVC play, going 9-9 in conference and finishing in sixth place – both of which match the program’s best since joining the Valley.

– The Beacons registered the first win at Drake and the first win at Bradley in program history.

– Valpo swept the season series over Drake, the program’s first two wins ever against the Bulldogs.

– The Beacons also tallied four top-100 wins within Valley play.

– Grace White was named MVC Sixth Player of the Year – the program’s first major postseason award since joining the Valley. Shay Frederick was a First Team All-MVC choice, while White was an All-Defensive Team selection and Olivia Brown earned a spot on the All-Newcomer Team.

…at Wisconsin

– Valpo got out to a quick start to the game, outscoring the Badgers 12-2 over the game’s first 5:02. Junior Ava Interrante had a 3-pointer during the run, while junior Leah Earnest had seven points and an offensive rebound which kept a possession alive for a layup from sophomore Katie Beyer.

– The Beacons were held scoreless for the next eight-plus minutes, a stretch which saw Wisconsin go on a 20-0 run to take a 22-12 lead.

– A pair of free throws from senior Olivia Brown with 6:41 to play in the first half snapped the Badgers’ run and started an eight-point spurt of Valpo’s own, as two free throws by sophomore Olivia Sims made it a two-point game with 3:11 to go in the period.

– The two squads traded just one bucket apiece in the final three minutes of the half, with Wisconsin holding a slim 24-22 lead at intermission.

– The Badgers scored inside on each of their first three possessions of the second half to gain separation, pulling out to an eight-point lead, and Valpo was unable to make it a one-possession game the rest of the way.

– Making her return to her home state, Earnest enjoyed a strong performance against the Badgers Wednesday. The junior scored a team-best 16 points and dominated on the glass, pulling down a game-high 13 rebounds — just one off her career high.

– Earnest was the lone Beacon to score in double figures, however, as the Badgers limited Valpo to 31.3% shooting from the field and 5-of-23 from the 3-point line while forcing 22 turnovers.

– On the flip side, the Beacons held the hosts to 35.8% shooting — the second-lowest clip of the season by a Valpo opponent. The Badgers also were just 4-of-22 from the 3-point line.

– Ilysse Pitts joined Earnest in hitting the boards hard on Wednesday evening, coming down with eight rebounds. The eight boards ties her career high, set 89 games ago against North Dakota State in Dec. 2018 during her freshman season.

…at Drake

– Valpo got out to a strong start, buoyed by its early defense. The Beacons forced five Drake turnovers in the opening five minutes of the game, four of which were steals by fifth-year point guard Ilysse Pitts.

– Meanwhile, on the offensive end, the Beacons had fifth-year Maya Dunson and junior Jayda Johnston hit early 3-pointers, while junior Ava Interrante had a 3-point play as Valpo led 11-7 at the first media timeout.

– Drake outscored Valpo 14-3 over the final five minutes of the first quarter to lead 21-14 at the end of one.

– Senior Olivia Brown helped keep Valpo within striking distance in the second period, scoring 11 points in that quarter alone — including three 3-pointers. The Bulldogs led 42-31 at halftime.

– Drake scored the first 11 points of the second half, and Valpo got no closer than 18 points the rest of the way. The Bulldogs were up 68-42 with 10 minutes to play.

– Drake shot 54% (27-of-50) for the game, while the Beacons were just 14-of-47 (29.8%) from the field.

– Valpo also committed 25 turnovers, allowing Drake to score 24 points off turnovers. The Beacons did force 19 Drake miscues, 12 of which were steals — highlighted by four apiece from Pitts and Interrante. Pitts set a season high with her four thefts, while Interrante broke her career high.

– Brown was the only Valpo player to score in double figures, finishing with 16 points, including four 3-pointers. Through eight Valley games, the senior is averaging 13.6 points/game and hitting at a 48.9% clip from the 3-point line.

…looking ahead

– Valpo closes out this weekend at home on Sunday afternoon against Bradley.

– The Beacons stay at the ARC for midweek action next week, welcoming UIC to town on Wednesday night.

…at the ARC

– Friday’s game is the ninth of 15 home games this season for Valpo and the fourth home MVC game.

– The Beacons are 2-6 at home so far this year and went 6-7 in home games last season.


– Illinois State enters Friday’s game tied atop the MVC standings at 7-1 in conference play and is 13-5 overall.

– The Redbirds checked in at #12 in the most recent iteration of the Mid-Major Top 25 poll.

– Illinois State has won its last six games, including each of the last four by double figures.

– Former D-II National Player of the Year Paige Robinson paces the Redbirds, averaging 18.6 ppg, while sharpshooter Mary Crompton averages 11.8 ppg and hits at a 45.6% clip from downtown.



INDIANAPOLIS – Returning to the Hoosier state with a wealth of experience at the NCAA DI level, the Marian Department of Athletics has named Kallie Noble as its head coach for women’s volleyball. Noble comes to Marian University after previously serving as the head coach of Nicholls State.

Director of Athletics Steve Downing and the search committee made the announcement on Wednesday, concluding a national search at the position.

Noble will serve as the fifth head coach in program history, taking over a program that was led by interim head coach Riley Anderson in 2022. The Knights went 26-7 overall finishing third in the Crossroads League, reaching the NAIA National Tournament Quarterfinals in the 2022 season.

“I am ecstatic to return to my home state of Indiana and be doing something that I love,” said Noble on becoming the new head coach of the Knights. “This is an exciting opportunity to build on the winning tradition that was created by the incredible people who came before me at Marian University. I look forward to building a championship-level volleyball program and making our student-athletes, fans, and alumni proud. Go Knights!”

Noble joins the Knights after previously leading the women’s indoor and beach volleyball teams at Nicholls State University for the previous four seasons. While at Nicholls, Noble’s teams garnered multiple honors from the Southland Conference for both athletic and academic success, while also earning three AVCA/USMC Team Academic Awards. Noble’s 2021 team reached the second round of the Southland Conference Tournament, taking her team the furthest of any Colonels team since 2009.

“I’m really happy to have Kallie Noble as part of our athletics department as the head women’s volleyball coach,” said Director of Athletics Steve Downing. “She is bringing a vast level of experience that will help us continue the tradition that we have established as an outstanding volleyball program here at Marian University. I know the players are looking forward to getting started with her, and as am I.

“I think she is going to be a big part of our overall team in the Marian Athletics Department.”

Prior to her time as head coach at Nicholls, Noble made five coaching tours as either an assistant coach or head coach, getting her start in collegiate coaching as an assistant with Lincoln Memorial University. In 2007 Noble served as the recruiting coordinator and an assistant coach for the University of New Orleans, spending one season with the Privateers. After working with New Orleans, Noble moved across the city to Tulane University, working with the Green Wave for four seasons as an assistant and recruiting coordinator. While at Tulane, Noble helped the Green Wave reach the NCAA Tournament while also working with five All-Conference USA honorees, which included one Conference USA Player of the Year.

In 2012 Noble made her first jump to a head coach position, taking over as the head coach of the University of St. Thomas in Houston, Texas. In her first season as the head coach, Noble led the Celts to the NAIA National Tournament, earning the runner-up honors in the Red River Athletic Conference. Noble Reached the RRAC Tournament in 2013 with St. Thomas, and in her tenure coached four NAIA Scholar Athletes.

In 2014, after two seasons as the head coach at St. Thomas, Noble returned to the NCAA level where she served as an assistant coach at the University of Memphis. With the Tigers, Noble led the offense by training the setters, helping lead Memphis to consecutive of winning seasons in her first two years. Noble also orchestrated all facets of Memphis Volleyball Youth Camps, and served as the supervisor for the team support system.

Noble will begin her tenure as head coach on Monday, January 30. The veteran coach earned a B.S. in Music and Education from Western Michigan University and obtained a Master’s Degree in Education and Counseling from Lincoln Memorial University.



Winona Lake, Ind. – The No. 6 Marian women’s basketball team picked up their 20th win of the season behind a career-high from Allison Bosse to help the Knights take down Grace 65-56 on the road. The win moves Marian to 11-1 in Crossroads League play and 20-2 overall.

Grace got on the board first, but it was Marian getting a bucket on the next possession from Kinnidy Garrard. Allison Bosse swished in the triple to spark a 6-0 run to put the Knights up 8-2 with 5:52 to go in the first quarter. The Lancers ended the run by knocking down the layup and triple to cut the lead down to one. Marian closed out the first quarter with a 10-4 spurt that saw six points coming from Bosse to help her team have the 18-11 lead.

The second quarter of play was more even as each team scored 16 points in the period. Once again it was Grace getting the first points of the quarter as they opened up with a 5-2 run to cut their deficit to 20-16 at the 6:43 mark. Marian saw their largest lead of the game at 3:42 mark after getting scores from Bosse and Garrard to go ahead nine. The two teams went back and forth the remainder of the quarter with Jayla Wehner having the last say as Ella Collier found her for the three-pointer. The Knights would hold the 34-27 lead going into halftime.

After the break, the Lancers began to eat at the Marian lead with a 6-2 run to start the second half. With Grace trailing only by three, Collier responded for the Knights with a pullup jumper before Aliyah Evans connected with Bosse for her 17th point of the game to put Marian up 40-33 with 6:11 to go in quarter three. Grace got within two behind a three-pointer from Jenna Blakley, but Bosse prevailed again with a three-pointer and jumper to put Marian ahead 47-40. Karlee Feldman and Kiersten Findley answered for Grace to make it 47-43. Evans found Garrard for the jumper with 28 seconds left to put Marian 49-43 going into the final quarter of play.

Collier got the first bucket 12 seconds into the fourth quarter that turned into an 8-2 run to give Marian their largest lead of the game at 55-45. A jumper from Feldman put an end to the run, but it was Collier and Bosse teaming up again for the next eight points to put the Knights up 12 with 2:37 to play. Grace had no answer for Marian as the Knights went on to win 65-56.

Bosse had a career-high 27 points to lead Marian, while also adding four rebounds. Garrard added 13 points and Collier added 10. Abbey McNally pulled down a team-high eight rebounds and scored seven points. Sara Majorosova dished out a game-high seven assists.

The Knights will return to action on Saturday when they make the trip to Goshen for a 1 PM tipoff.



INDIANAPOLIS – Trailing by as many as 20 points in the second half, the Marian men’s basketball team made a desparate comeback late in the game, but came up empty on their closing offensive possessions as the Knights were unable to pull the upset over No. 7 Grace in an 80-70 defeat. Marian’s loss drops them to 17-5 overall and 7-5 in league play.

The Knights opened the game on a tear, feeding off the energy from the student section as they answered a Grace make with an 11-0 run. Luke Gohmann played a key role in the hot start scoring the first five points for Marian, while Josh Bryan and Hayden Langkabel followed with three’s of their own. The 11-2 run forced an early timeout for Grace, and settled the Lancers into play as they were able to find an offensive identity after the media timeout.

Marian pressed Grace with Taeshon Cherry scores, while the first double-digit was captured at the 11:54 mark on a Christian Harvey trey. The two sides went shot for shot on their next three scoring plays, as Marian was able to hold their 10-point lead. With 8:33 remaining Grace began to build momentum as Frankie Davidson scored four unanswered points, with Ian Scott slashing the Knights’ lead down to four. A dunk from Scott continued the run, with a 6-0 spurt bringing the game level at 30-30. A pair of three-point swings allowed the Lancers to keep with Marian after tying the score, but with 2:03 remaining the Lancers took their first lead since 2-0 on a Jakob Gibbs three.

Grace would score the final six points of the first half to go into the break with a 42-38 lead, and in the second half came out dialed in connecting on each of their first three shots. Cherry helped the Knights cut into their eight-point deficit with a pair of quick scores to get within three, but a pair of Lancer scores increased the visiting lead to seven. After the media timeout, Marian went cold missing six straight shots and a pair of free throws, while Grace added four points to gain a double-digit lead with 12:41 remaining.

Maximus Gizzi broke up the run with a pair of makes, but a sluggish offensive approach allowed Grace to use a 9-0 and increase their lead to 18 points. Luke Heady stopped the run with a made three to show 67-52 on the scoreboard, however it was not enough to completely stop Grace as they would increase their lead to 20 points by scoring five unanswered. Trailing 72-52 with 7:00 to play, Marian slowly started to mount a comeback as Bryan drained consecutive three pointers.

Brayn’s pair of three’s brought late energy to the crowd, as Marian began to feed off the momentum with Cherry scoring seven points in a 10-0 run to get within four. Trailing 74-70 with 1:34 to play and possession, Cherry forced a contested shot to try and beat the shot clock, however missed wide off the glass. Grace would answer with an Ian Scott three-pointer, sealing the game as the Lancers would force two Marian misses and two turnovers in the final minute to take an 80-70 victory.

Marian shot 36 percent from the field in their third consecutive loss to Grace, while shooting a poor 4-of-10 at the free throw line. Despite being out-rebounded, Marian held control of the ball, committing just five turnovers while forcing 16 against Grace. Cherry led the Knights with 18 points, with Bryan scoring 12 and Langkabel finishing with 10. Gohmann led Marian in rebounding with 10, while Harvey turned in a game-best eight assists.

Marian will look to finish the week strong and rebound into the win column as they travel to Goshen College on Saturday for a 3 p.m. tip.


INDIANA WESLEYAN ATHLETICS: https://iwuwildcats.com/

EARLHAM ATHLETICS: https://goearlham.com/

WABASH ATHLETICS: https://sports.wabash.edu/

FRANKLIN ATHLETICS: https://franklingrizzlies.com/

ROSE-HULMAN ATHLETICS: https://athletics.rose-hulman.edu/

ANDERSON ATHLETICS: https://athletics.anderson.edu/landing/index

TRINE ATHLETICS: https://trinethunder.com/landing/index

BETHEL ATHLETICS: https://bupilots.com/

DEPAUW ATHLETICS: https://depauwtigers.com/

HANOVER ATHLETICS: https://athletics.hanover.edu/

MANCHESTER ATHLETICS: https://muspartans.com/

HUNTINGTON ATHLETICS: https://www.huathletics.com/

OAKLAND CITY ATHLETICS: https://gomightyoaks.com/index.aspx

ST. FRANCIS ATHLETICS: https://www.saintfranciscougars.com/landing/index

IU KOKOMO ATHLETICS: https://iukcougars.com/

IU EAST ATHLETICS: https://www.iueredwolves.com/

IU SOUTH BEND ATHLETICS: https://iusbtitans.com/

PURDUE NORTHWEST ATHLETICS: https://pnwathletics.com/

INDIANA TECH ATHLETICS: https://indianatechwarriors.com/index.aspx


ST. MARY OF THE WOODS ATHLETICS: https://smwcathletics.com/

GOSHEN COLLEGE ATHLETICS: https://goleafs.net/

HOLY CROSS ATHLETICS: https://www.hcsaints.com/index.php

TAYLOR ATHLETICS: https://www.taylortrojans.com/

VINCENNES ATHLETICS: https://govutrailblazers.com/landing/index



Eastern Conference
 WLPctConf GBHomeRoadDivConfLast 10Streak
Boston3514.71418-517-96-020-108-22 L
Philadelphia3116.6603.018-713-95-318-108-26 W
Milwaukee3117.6463.519-512-126-418-136-42 W
Brooklyn2918.6175.013-716-115-420-94-61 L
Cleveland2920.5926.020-59-158-318-94-61 L
Miami2722.5518.016-910-135-211-137-32 W
New York2623.5319.012-1314-102-617-145-51 W
Atlanta2524.51010.013-1012-145-417-177-31 W
Indiana2426.48011.516-98-173-317-132-81 L
10 Chicago2225.46812.013-108-155-418-146-41 L
11 Washington2226.45812.512-1010-165-313-155-54 W
12 Toronto2227.44913.015-127-154-915-196-42 W
13 Orlando1929.39615.513-126-172-69-195-52 W
14 Charlotte1336.26522.05-168-204-66-233-72 L
15 Detroit1237.24523.06-176-190-84-232-84 L
Western Conference
 WLPctConf GBHomeRoadDivConfLast 10Streak
Denver3415.69422-412-119-425-108-21 L
Memphis3117.6462.520-311-146-215-146-44 L
Sacramento2720.5746.016-1111-95-515-97-31 L
New Orleans2623.5318.017-89-157-316-122-86 L
LA Clippers2624.5208.513-1113-134-416-155-53 W
Dallas2524.5109.017-98-156-218-113-72 L
Phoenix2524.5109.018-77-178-019-135-54 W
Golden State2424.5009.518-66-184-414-94-61 W
Minnesota2525.5009.516-109-156-616-166-41 W
10 Utah2526.49010.016-99-174-518-155-51 L
11 Oklahoma City2325.47910.514-109-154-611-137-31 L
12 Portland2325.47910.513-1010-155-717-154-62 W
13 LA Lakers2326.46911.013-1210-141-912-175-51 W
14 San Antonio1434.29219.59-165-172-75-272-83 L
15 Houston1137.22922.57-164-211-86-271-91 L


Eastern Conference
Boston Bruins47385480361819822-1-316-4-19-1-0
Carolina Hurricanes473098682715412614-5-216-4-65-3-2
Toronto Maple Leafs4930118683016612919-3-411-8-47-2-1
New Jersey Devils4731124663016412313-10-218-2-28-1-1
Tampa Bay Lightning4630151612916713718-4-112-11-06-4-0
New York Rangers4826148602415312812-9-414-5-46-2-2
Pittsburgh Penguins4724158562315514414-5-410-10-45-3-2
Washington Capitals5025196562515814213-8-312-11-34-6-0
Buffalo Sabres4725193532418016011-12-214-7-15-4-1
10 Florida Panthers5023216522217117612-6-311-15-35-3-2
11 New York Islanders5023225512314414313-9-210-13-31-6-3
12 Detroit Red Wings4620188481914115512-10-38-8-54-5-1
13 Philadelphia Flyers4920218482013615910-12-210-9-65-4-1
14 Ottawa Senators4721233452013515313-11-18-12-24-6-0
15 Montreal Canadiens4820253431612717511-13-09-12-35-5-0
16 Columbus Blue Jackets4815303331412518611-15-14-15-23-6-1
Western Conference
Dallas Stars5028139652717113013-5-515-8-45-2-3
Seattle Kraken4728145612817214512-9-316-5-27-2-1
Winnipeg Jets4931171633116012817-6-014-11-16-4-0
Vegas Golden Knights4929173612615814214-13-015-4-34-5-1
Los Angeles Kings5027176602316317014-9-213-8-46-4-0
Colorado Avalanche4626173552214412612-8-314-9-07-3-0
Edmonton Oilers4927184582718015912-11-315-7-17-1-2
Calgary Flames4823169552215114514-8-29-8-75-3-2
Minnesota Wild4625174542214513413-8-112-9-34-4-2
10 Nashville Predators4723186522113113713-7-310-11-36-4-0
11 St. Louis Blues4823223492015217210-12-213-10-15-5-0
12 Vancouver Canucks481926341161601919-13-110-13-22-8-0
13 San Jose Sharks4914251038131471875-12-79-13-32-5-3
14 Arizona Coyotes481528535131251759-8-26-20-32-8-0
15 Anaheim Ducks481429533111182018-13-16-16-44-5-1
16 Chicago Blackhawks461428432141101689-16-25-12-26-4-0


January 26, 1913 – Jim Thorpe relinquished his 1912 Olympic medals for playing as a professional. An Olympics Fandom.com article states that in late January 1913, the Worcester Telegram published a story announcing that Thorpe had played professional baseball, and other U.S. newspapers followed up the story. Thorpe had indeed played professional baseball in the Eastern Carolina League for Rocky Mount, North Carolina, in 1909 and 1910, receiving meager pay; reportedly as little as US $2 per game and as much as $35 per week. College players, in fact, regularly spent summers playing professionally but most used aliases, unlike Thorpe.

January 26, 1960 – According to the Raiders.com website at an AFL owners meeting Lamar Hunt of the Dallas Texans was named as the first AFL president.

January 26, 1960 – Pete Rozelle elected NFL commissioner on the 23rd ballot. a dozen National Football league team owners cast 23 ballots over a nine-day span in a futile attempt to find a successor for Bert Bell, the league’s popular and competent commissioner, who had died three months earlier.

Early in the marathon meeting, Austin Gunsel, the NFL’s treasurer and Marshall Leahy, the league’s chief legal counsel, each had strong but almost-equal support. Numerous attempts to settle on experienced, well-known compromise nominees came to naught.Finally according to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, two powerful and respected administrators – Wellington Mara of the New York Giants and Paul Brown of the Cleveland Browns, hit on the idea of Pete Rozelle, the 33-year-old general manager of the Los Angeles Rams, as a candidate most owners might accept. Rozelle was informed of their decision and then asked to leave the room so his name could be presented and discussed.

Pete Rozelle’s greatest accomplishments in his tenure as Commisioner we that he moved the Legue offices to New York from Philadelphia, announced a contract had been signed with CBS that produced the then-princely sum of $4,650,000 a year to be divided equally among the NFL’s teams and the merger with the AFL up to creating the Super Bowl spectacle.

January 26, 1976 – Louisiana Superdome, New Orleans – In the NFL Pro Bowl, the NFC edged out the AFC, 23-20. The game’s MVP was Billy White Shoes Johnson the wide receiver of the Houston Oilers.

January 26, 1986 – Louisiana Superdome, New Orleans – Super Bowl XX presented the New England Patriots versus the Chicago Bears. The Bears were the top team in the League boasting only a single loss all season in a Monday Night Football contest at Miami. The defense of that 1985 Bears team may be the best ever in NFL history as Buddy Ryan and Mike Ditka’s team surrendered only 198 points for the season per a History.com article. Players like Dan Hampton, Richard Dent, Mike Singletary and William the Refrigerator Perry made a formidable front against any opposing offense. In fact in this game at halftime the Patriots had a total of negative 19 yards! The impact of the defense was ferocious as they caused 6 New England Turnovers and 4 of them resulted in Chicago points. Walter Payton graced the ball control offense of the Bears to perfectly compliment the strong D. The Chicago Bears knocked around the New England Patriots that day 46-10 to capture the NFL crown the first such since 1963. Richard Dent from his defensive end position earned the Super Bowl XX Most Valuable Player Award.

January 26, 1991 – Jan Stenerud becomes 1st pure placekicker to gain entrance into the Pro Hall of Fame.

January 26, 1992 – Metrodome, Minneapolis – Super Bowl XXVI hosted the matchup of the Buffalo Bills and the Washington Redskins. We looked to an article on the Washington Team website to garner the games details. The 1991 Redskins were a tough seasoned group that year, starting the season with an 11-0 record. They finished 14-2 and then in the playoffs they crushed the aspirations of Atlanta and Detroit with a 65-17 scoring differential. Their Super Bowl opponents the Bills were 13-3 in the regular season and had the NFL’s most explosive offense led by Jim Kelly, Thurman Thomas and Andre Reed and a defense that featured sack master Bruce Smith. The first quarter was scoreless as the Bill avoided two deep Washington drives by a missed field goal and an interception of Mark Rypien. However the Redskins would not be denied in the second quarter as they held a 17-0 halftime lead on a Lohmiller 34-yard field goal, a 10-yard touchdown pass from Rypien to Earnest Byner and a 1-yard TD plunge by Earnest Byner. It got worse for the Bill just 16 seconds into the third quarter as an errant Kelly pass landed into the hands of linebacker Kurt Gouveia, who returned it 23 yards to the Buffalo 2. One play later, Gerald Riggs crossed the goal line to increase the Redskins’ lead. The Bills got things rolling a bit later but it wasn’t enough as the Washington Redskins outlasted the Buffalo Bills, 37-24. The game’s MVP was Mark Rypien.

January 26, 1997 – Louisiana Superdome, New Orleans – At Super Bowl XXXI the Green Bay Packers knocked around the New England Patriots, 35-21. Patriot quarterback Drew Bledsoe was intercepted 4 times and sacked 5 times, 3 times by legendary player Reggie White as the Packers gave pressure all game long as listed by the Pro Football Reference site. The game’s MVP was kick returner Desmond Howard of Green Bay who famously returned a 3rd quarter kick 99 yards to paydirt to solidify the Packers lead.

January 26, 2003 – Qualc:omm Stadium, San Diego – Super Bowl XXXVII was a one sided affair as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat the Oakland Raiders, 48-21 per the Ihavenet.com. The Bucs used a surge of 34 unanswered points to dim Oakland’s chances. The Most Valuable Player was Tampa Safety Dexter Jackson who picked off two first half Raider passes. Super Bowl XXXVII ended up having 138.9 million viewers which at the time made it the most watched show in television history.

January 26, 2014 – Aloha Stadium, Honolulu – The first year of the NFL’s attempt to bring a different angle to the stale NFL Pro Bowl had them not separate the stars by conference but take the vote winners and have two former stars in Jerry Rice and Deion Sanders choose the teams in a style much like you would do in gym class. Team Rice edged out Team Sanders, 22-21. The game’s MVPs were Nick Foles of Philadelphia and linebacker Derrick Johnson of the Kansas City Chiefs.

January 26, 2020 – Camping World Stadium, Orlando, Florida – At the 2019 season’s NFL Pro Bowl the AFC defeated the NFC, 38-33. Lamar Jackson, QB of the Baltimore Ravens and his future teammate Calais Campbell who at the time was a Defensive End with the Jacksonville Jaguars were awarded with the Most Valuable Player awards.


January 26, 1899 – Oshkosh, Wisconsin – The University of Wisconsin at Oshkosh tackle, Marty Below was born. The National Football Foundation selected Marty Below to enter into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1988.

January 26, 1906 -Milwaukee, Wisconsin – Fred Miller the University of Notre Dame tackle celebrated his date of birth. The NFF voters inducted Fred Miller into their College Football Hall of Fame in 1985.

January 26, 1935 – Emporia, Virginia – Henry Jordan the defensive tackle from the University of Virginia was born. According to the Pro Football Hall of Fame Jordan played 13 seasons in the NFL with the Cleveland Browns and the Green Bay Packers. He was voted as All-NFL 6 times and played in four Pro Bowls and 7 NFL Title games plus Super Bowls I and II. Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrined Henry Jordan posthumously in 1995.

January 26, 1950 – Jacksonville, Florida – The awesome University of Florida linebacker Jack Youngblood was born. The NFF lists that in 1969, Jack led the Gators in tackles with 66 and in 1970, he made the All-America team. Youngblood pulled off one of the greatest plays in Florida Gators history when playing the University of Georgia. The Bulldogs were up 17-10 and had the ball on Florida’s 1-yard line late in the game. Georgia opted for a rushing attempt for a touchdown but in the plays process, Youngblood stopped him short of the goal line, knocked the ball out of his grip, and recovered it.! The failure to score made a difference in the game as Florida went on to win 24-17.! The National Football Foundation inducted Jack Youngblood into their College Football Hall of Fame in 1992. In the 1971 NFL Draft the LA Rams used their first pick to take Jack Youngblood. He spent 14 seasons with the franchise and was an All-Pro player 5 times playing in 7 straight Pro Bowls. Jack Youngblood entered into the Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrined Jack in 2014.

January 26, 1960 – Greensboro, North Carolina – Clemson’s fine linebacker Jeff Davis was born. According to his NFF Bio Davis lead the Clemson Tigers defense in 1981 as he was its leading tackler and team co-captain as his teammates called him “The Judge.” Davis was the cause of many turnovers as over his career as his vicious hits led to ten fumbles eight of which he recovered himself to go along with four interceptions on the season. The National Football Foundation voters selected Jeff Davis to be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2007.


1955       The writers elect Yankee legend Joe DiMaggio (88.8%), the self-proclaimed “Greatest Living Ballplayer,” to the Hall of Fame in his third year of eligibility. The three-time American MVP, instrumental in the Bronx Bombers capturing nine world championships, compiled a consecutive 56-game hitting streak in 1941, considered one of baseball’s unbreakable records.

1957       Joe Cairnes replaces Lou Perini, the owner of the Braves, as the team’s president. Perini, who earned his fortune in the construction business, is best remembered as the person responsible for moving the franchise, which he purchased from Bob Quinn in 1945, from Boston to Milwaukee eight seasons later.

1960       Jackie Jensen announces his retirement due to a fear of flying, a condition that Red Sox owner Tom Yawkey tried to help his outfielder overcome by arranging therapy. The 1958 MVP will change his mind, returning to the team in 1961, but will stay retired after the season, having what he considered a sub-par year in which he batted .263 and drove in 66 runs.

1989       Major League Baseball rescinds the modifications initiated last season to make balk calls more uniform throughout baseball, reverting to the pre-1988 rules. The change of wording from ‘a complete stop’ to ‘a single complete and discernible stop, with both feet on the ground’ had caused umpires to call an unprecedented amount of balks in both the American and National League.

1990       The Red Sox hire Elaine Weddington as the team’s assistant general manager, making her the highest-ranking black female executive in major league baseball. The St. John’s graduate received a scholarship to attend the university from the Jackie Robinson Foundation.

2001       The June 8-10 (Arlington) and June 15-17 (Houston) interleague games between the Astros and Rangers will be known as the Lone Star Series. The contests will mark the first time the two Texas teams have ever played against one another during the regular season.

2002       The Mariners trade David Bell to the Giants for infielder Desi Relaford acquired earlier this offseason, along with Tsuyoshi Shinjo from the Mets for southpaw Shawn Estes. The 29-year-old veteran third baseman became expendable when Seattle obtained Jeff Cirillo from the Rockies last month.

2009       The Yankees sign starting pitcher Andy Pettitte to a $5.5 million, one-year deal, less than half the club’s original $10 million offer. The 36-year-old southpaw, however, can make an additional $4.5 million based on innings pitched and another $2 million dependent on days spent on the active roster.

2009       The Royals and Zack Greinke, avoiding salary arbitration, agree to a $38 million, four-year contract. The 25-year-old right-hander, grateful to the club’s understanding of his social disorder, which caused him to bolt from spring training two years ago, posted a 13-10 record last season with the best ERA (3.47) by a Kansas City starter in 11 years.

2010       Jon Garland and the Padres agree to a $5.3 million, one-year deal that includes a mutual option for $6.75 million in 2011. Along with Chris Young and Kevin Correia, the 30-year-old right-hander, known for his durability, will play a significant role in San Diego’s rotation.

2010       Ben Sheets and the A’s agree on a $10 million, one-year contract, making the free-agent right-hander the team’s second-highest-paid player behind third baseman Eric Chavez. The 31-year-old, recovering from elbow surgery that caused him to miss last season, compiled an 86-83 record along with a 3.72 ERA in his first eight seasons in the major leagues, all with the Brewers.

2012       The Mets announce that John Franco, the club’s all-time leader in saves and games pitched, will be inducted into the team’s Hall of Fame. The All-Star closer, who has the second-longest tenure in franchise history behind Ed Kranepool, collected 276 of his career 424 saves, the most by any left-handed reliever in baseball history, with New York.

2012       In a move necessitated by Victor Martinez’s season-ending tear of his left anterior cruciate ligament, Prince Fielder and the Tigers agree to a nine-year, $214 million contract. As a child, Prince hit fence-clearing drives when taking batting practice with his dad, Cecil, who hit 51 home runs playing with Detroit in 1990.

2013       At the Walter E. Washington Convention Center during NatsFest, the Nationals introduce William Howard Taft as the fifth participant in the team’s iconic Presidents Race, a Washington, D.C. ballpark tradition since 2006. The 27th President of the United States will compete against the Rushmore Four, George, Tom, Abe, and Teddy.


3 – 4 – 5 – 6 – 25 – 84 – 99 – 95 – 11 – 13 – 33 – 44 – 23 – 66 – 22 – 81 – 34 – 9 – 56 – 87 – 8 – 24 – 93

January 26, 1921 – Corb Denneny, Number 6, of the Toronto St. Patricks scored 6 goals in a home game against the Hamilton Tigers, that the Toronto squad won 10-3.

January 26, 1951 – Legendary players Mel Ott (long time Number 4) and Jimmie Foxx (long time Number 3) elected to Baseball Hall of Fame

January 26, 1956 – Hank Greenberg (long time Number 5) and Joe Cronin (long time Number 4) are elected to Baseball Hall of Fame

January 26, 1960 – Oakland Raiders enter the American Football League

January 26, 1960 – Prep hardcourt sensation, Danny Heater, Number 25 scored 135 points in a high school basketball game in Burnsville West Virginia.

January 26, 1976 – NFL Pro Bowl, Louisiana Superdome, New Orleans: NFC beats AFC, 23-20; MVP was Houston Oilers, WR, Number 84, Billy White Shoes Johnson.

January 26, 1985 – The “Great One,” Wayne Gretzsky tallied his 50th goal of the season in just the 49th game he played in. Gretzsky wore Number 99 for the Edmonton Oilers

January 26, 1986 – Number 95 , Richard Dent became one of the rare defensive players to become the Super Bowl MVP in Super Bowl XX as his ChicagoBears dropped the New England Patriots in the big game, 46-10

January 26, 1991 – Houston Rockets guard, Number 11, Vernon Maxwell becomes 5th player in NBA history to score 30 points in a quarter in Rockets’ 103-97 home win over Cleveland; joins Wilt Chamberlain (Number 13), David Thompson (Number 33), George Gervin (Number 44) andMichael Jordan (Number 23)

January 26, 1991 – Jan Stenerud, Number 3 became the first true placekicker to make NFL Hall of Fame

January 26, 1992 – Super Bowl XXVI, Metrodome, Minneapolis, MI: Washington Redskins beat Buffalo Bills, 37-24; MVP chosn was Washington, QB, Number 11, Mark Rypien,

January 26, 1995 – With a record 6,254,427 ballots cast by fans in NBA All-Star Voting, Detroit Pistons young star, Number 33, Grant Hill becomes the first rookie to lead all NBA players in All-Star votes received, earning #1 on 1,289,585 ballots

January 26, 1997 – Pittsburgh Penguins, Center, Number 66, Mario Lemieux ties NHL record with 4 goals in the 3rd period as Pittsburgh wins, 5-2 at Montreal; 39th career hat trick and 13th 4-goal game, tying NHL record shared by Wayne Gretzky (Number 99) and Mike Bossy (Number 22)

January 26, 1997 – Super Bowl XXXI, Louisiana Superdome, New Orleans, LA: Green Bay Packers beat New England Patriots, 35-21; MVP: Number 81, Desmond Howard, Green Bay KR

January 26, 2003 – Super Bowl XXXVII, Qualc:omm Stadium, San Diego, CA: Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat Oakland Raiders, 48-21; MVP selected was Tampa Bay, S, Number 34, Dexter Jackson,

January 26, 2014 – NFL Pro Bowl, Aloha Stadium, Honolulu, HI: Team Rice beats Team Sanders, 22-21; MVPs were Philadelphia, QB, Number 9, Nick Foles and KC Chiefs, LB, Number 56, Derrick Johnson

January 26, 2019 – 64th NHL All Star Games, SAP Centre, San Jose, CA: Metropolitan All Stars win four-team, 3-on-3 tournament. The game’s MVP chosen was Pittsburgh Penguins, C, Number 87, Sidney Crosby,

January 26, 2020 – We lost the great Kobe Bryant on this day when a helicopter that he hired to transport he, his daughter and some friends crashed in foggy conditions into a mountain near Calabasas, California. Bryant famously wore Number 8 and Number 24 during his time in the NBA with the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers retired both numbers in his honor.

January 26, 2020 – NFL Pro Bowl, Camping World Stadium, Orlando, Florida: AFC beats NFC, 38-33; MVP’s: Lamar Jackson (Number 8), QB (Baltimore Ravens), Calais Campbell (Number 93), DE (Jacksonville Jaguars)


St. Francis Brooklyn at Wagner5:00pmCBSSN
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South Dakota at Western Illinois7:00pm
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Charlotte at Rice8:00pmESPN+
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Grand Canyon at Abilene Christian8:00pmESPN+
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Eastern Illinois at Southern Indiana8:30pmESPN+
Seattle U at Sam Houston8:30pmESPN+
UCLA at USC9:00pmESPN2
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Colorado at Oregon9:00pmPAC12N
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Houston Christian at Northwestern State9:00pmESPN+
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UC Irvine at Cal State Fullerton10:00pmSpectrum
Portland at Loyola Marymount10:00pmStadium
San Diego at Pepperdine10:00pmWCCN
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Primeira Liga: Paços de Ferreira vs Benfica3:15pmGOLTV
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Australian Open10:30pmESPN2